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Staff performs maintenance, testing


Staff writer

Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant shut down unit 1 for control element assembly maintenance and testing on Nov. 28.

Kory Raftery, spokesman for the plant, said the unit was shut down Nov. 28 at 8:37 a.m. to replace a control element assembly and test the other assemblies for coil strength.

“The issue has no impact on public health and safety,” Raftery said of the shutdown. “The decision was made to ensure the facility’s equipment can be precisely controlled by operators.”

A control element assembly, which houses control rods, Raftery explained, helps to safely control reactivity. If the control element assembly loses electrical power, he said the rods drop into the core, which is the rods’ safest position.

He said that after a control rod, which controls the level of power in the reactor, was dropped into the reactor core this summer, the plant has “put extra rigor in place as well as a specific program focused on monitoring the rest of the unit 1 [control element assemblies].”

Raftery said Nov. 29 the unit was still offline for the maintenance and testing and will return to power when it’s complete.