July 8, 2002

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif., July 8, 2002-Officials at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS) announced today that Unit 2 returned to service on July 2, completing a complex and challenging 45-day refueling and maintenance outage.  The outage was completed two days ahead of schedule. 

This refueling and maintenance outage included, among other things, a detailed inspection of the reactor vessel head nozzle penetrations.  The reactor head nozzle penetrations have received industry attention recently when leakage from similar nozzles was identified several months ago at the Davis Besse nuclear plant near Toledo, Ohio.  The inspection San Onofre conducted found no indications of leakage in the 102 nozzles that penetrate the vessel head.
San Onofre officials report that the plant is operating well at 100 percent reactor power.   In addition to the reactor refueling, this maintenance outage included: 

  • More than 4,000 specific maintenance/inspection activities, requiring 350,000 man-hours of labor; 
  • Replacement of the existing reactor vessel head insulation with a new design to ease future inspection activities; 
  • Thorough inspection and maintenance of Unit 2's two steam generators.

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Located in northern San Diego County, San Onofre is operated by Southern California Edison and is jointly owned by Edison (75%), San Diego Gas & Electric (20%) and the cities of Riverside and Anaheim (5%).  The nuclear plant's two operating units produce about 2,200 megawatts of electric power-enough to meet the needs of up to 2.2 million residential customers.