Xcel nuclear plant receives component

Westinghouse Electric Co. has successfully installed a replacement steam dryer at Xcel Energy's Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant, a single-unit 610 MW GE-designed boiling water reactor (BWR) in Minnesota. This is the first BWR replacement steam dryer installed by Westinghouse at a U.S. BWR plant.

This component was designed by Westinghouse Sweden and modified by Westinghouse's U.S.-based BWR engineering team with support from Toshiba Corp. for use in the American market. The Westinghouse Sweden steam dryer design is in use at more than 11 BWR plants throughout Europe and the Nordic Region.

BWR steam dryers are used during the final stage of moisture removal to provide the highest-quality steam to the turbine. The new steam dryer will support Monticello's renewed operating license, which extends through 2030, and its proposed capacity increase of 70 MW. Westinghouse removed Monticello's original steam dryer from the reactor and installed the replacement during the plant's spring 2011 refueling outage.

The Monticello replacement steam dryer was fabricated at Toshiba's Keihin facility, in Yokohama, Japan, and was shipped from Yokohama to the U.S. in December 2010. It arrived at the Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant 20 days ahead of schedule. The one-piece assembly is 17 feet in diameter, 16 feet tall and weighs 60,000 pounds.

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