The Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff has scheduled a meeting for Tuesday, Dec. 17, to discuss the results of an inspection related to a request to extend the operating license for the Sequoyah nuclear power plant.
The Tennessee Valley Authority, which owns and operates the plant near Soddy Daisy, about 16 miles northeast of Chattanooga, has applied for a 20-year license extension for the plant’s two units. The inspection to be discussed on Dec. 17 is part of the NRC’s ongoing review of that application.
The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. in the Sequoyah plant’s training center auditorium, at 2460 Igou Ferry Road in Soddy Daisy. After a discussion of the inspection results, NRC staff members will be available to answer questions about the review.
Under NRC regulations, the original operating license for a nuclear power plant is issued for 40 years. Companies may apply to renew those licenses for an additional 20 years if agency requirements are met.
TVA applied to the NRC in January 2013 to renew the licenses for the two Sequoyah reactors. If approved, the license for Sequoyah Unit 1 would be extended to Sept. 17, 2040, and Unit 2 would be extended to Sept. 15, 2041.
The NRC license renewal review process, including inspections, helps ensure that a plant manages the effects of aging on key safety systems, structures and components with thorough monitoring and maintenance programs during the additional 20 years of operation. The NRC inspection team looked at those programs and also assessed the processes used to decide what equipment and structures are required to be monitored for aging effects.
No final licensing decisions for reactors, including license renewal, will be made by the NRC until the waste confidence rule is completed. The NRC’s waste confidence rule, which addresses storage of spent nuclear fuel after a plant ceases operation, is expected to finalized in September 2014.
A copy of the Sequoyah license renewal application is available on the NRC’s web site at: www.nrc.gov/reactors/operating/licensing/renewal/applications/sequoyah.html. Additional information on the NRC’s license renewal review process is available at: www.nrc.gov/reactors/operating/licensing/renewal.html .