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Entergy expected to replace condenser tubes at Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant after delays

Nuclear Regulatory Commission
The James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says the operators of the James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant in Scriba failed to replace the plant's condenser tubes when they should have.

When the power plant goes offline later this year for refueling, the condenser tubes at the facility will also be replaced.

According to a report by the N.R.C., in recent years condenser tube leaks have forced the plant to operate at reduced power to repair the tubes multiple times. The condenser was installed in 1995, and the N.R.C. says the plant missed opportunities in both 2007 and 2009 to identify and address the issue in its reports.

Both Entergy, which operates the plant, and the N.R.C. says the leaks do not cause a safety issue. But if the leaks become more severe, they could cause corrosion issues with other equipment, causing other problems.

Entergy considered replacing the condenser tubes in the fall of 2012, but concerns about replacement times and the availability of materials put the project on hold until this year.