Holtec International this week said it had completed the transfer of irradiated fuel at the retired Oyster Creek nuclear power plant to dry storage, putting the decommissioning project on pace to become the fastest on record for the United States.
The last canister was moved on May 21. Holtec has set its schedule on a complete decommissioning of the plant, with the exception of long-term fuel storage, to be done within an eight-year period, more than 50 years faster than its regulatory 60-year commitment.
The defueling was conducted with “seamless safety and below dose estimates by Holtec’s Nuclear Power Division, a mere 32 months after the oyster Creek’s permanent shutdown,” the company said, declaring this to be “a new world record.”
The speed of decommissioning, aside from any monetary advantages, “is in accord with Holtec’s primary goal to inoculate its decommissioning sites from threats of any kind, including malevolent human acts,” the company said.
At Oyster Creek, Holtec technicians loaded a total of 33 high-capacity HI-STORM FW systems with each system having the loading capacity of 89 BWR spent fuel assemblies. The teams loaded 33 casks in 21 weeks.
The dry storage campaign was managed by Steven Soler, Director of NPD’s domestic field services business unit and Ms. Laurie Murray, Pool to Pad Program Manager. Mr. Jeffrey Dostal is the Plant’s Site Vice President. CDI, a Holtec subsidiary jointly owned with SNC Lavalin, is the General Decommissioning Contractor.
“We are implementing a state-of-the-art Aging Management program to protect the old horizontal modules from ravages of salt air while we work in parallel with the DOE to move all of the plant’s legacy high level waste to the ultimate safety of consolidated storage at our HI-STORE CIS site in New Mexico that is currently under NRC review,” says Holtec’s SVP of NPD Operations, Mr. P.K. Chaudhary. He called the Oyster Creek’s used fuel storage the most structurally robust industrial facility “whose extreme ruggedness and inherent safety” are second to none and is in keeping with our commitment to the people of central New Jersey.”
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