Weak weld to be fixed at Pennsylvania nuke plant

Published on NewsOK Modified: May 6, 2014 at 7:33 am •  Published: May 6, 2014
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SHIPPINGPORT, Pa. (AP) — FirstEnergy Corp. says a weak weld has been found on the reactor head of one unit at a western Pennsylvania nuclear power plant, which must be fixed before the reactor is restarted.

Company spokeswoman Jennifer Young says the reactor was shut down for refueling and maintenance when the company's inspectors found a weak weld among 66 on the plant's Unit 2 reactor vessel head.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman Neil Sheehan says the flaw, left untreated, could have developed into a crack. He and Young say a new weld with a different alloy will be used to fix the problem.

The plant about 30 miles northwest of Pittsburgh replaced its Unit 1 reactor in 2006. The Unit 2 reactor vessel head, installed in 1987, is scheduled for replacement in 2017. The weld problem will not affect that schedule.