Program focuses on nuclear power plant reliability and performance

Dec 01, 2004

With federal regulators considering license extensions, power uprates, component obsolescence and productivity demands at a growing number of U.S. nuclear power plants, GE Energy’s nuclear business has launched a new service to help utilities evaluate and enhance plant reliability, performance and safety.

GE Energy’s “Performance 20” is a multi-phase program that offers a holistic view of major plant systems, equipment and components by comparing a given plant’s current baseline conditions against desired future conditions.

With the customer’s business plan in mind, GE uses Performance 20’s Reliability Evaluation phase to assess the condition of plant systems, equipment and components. The evaluation identifies the need for repairs, replacement parts, upgrades and the potential for uprates from a system to a component level.

“We recognize the safety and performance record for the nuclear fleet in the United States is outstanding and increases the value of this important asset to the nation’s overall power-generation portfolio,” says Andy White, president and CEO of GE Energy’s nuclear business. “Because nuclear power is unaffected by fluctuating oil and gas prices, it is an economically attractive, utility-scale power source that promotes U.S. energy independence. Since the construction of new, even more cost-effective reactors will not begin until at least 2010, utilities need to improve the performance, reliability and safety of their existing reactors.

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Performance 20 is also designed to incorporate advancements in technology and new industry best practices. For example, as the industry gradually introduces new technology such as digital controls, Performance 20 will incorporate such advancements to help customers maximize plant performance and efficiency. GE Energy’s optimization services and other business units are also developing new, critical monitoring and diagnostic systems that will eventually become key components of the Performance 20 portfolio.

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