News

USA Announces Revised Membership Level Designations

November 14th, 2016
Coinciding with recent governance model changes and membership adjustments, the Utilities Service Alliance (USA) has updated its Membership Level designations to more clearly and accurately reflect membership status and benefits.  Effective immediately, USA will designate three levels of USA membership: Full Member, Efficiency Member and Affiliate Member (see table below).The Full Member level coincides with...
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USA Core Business Activities to Continue in 2017

November 14th, 2016
While the Utilities Service Alliance (USA) has instituted several changes related to its Governance, Oversight, Support and Perform (GOSP) model, its core business to improve plant safety and performance, and drive economic benefit remains strong.“We have communicated much about the ways our new GOSP model has changed the focus of USA’s operational improvement efforts and...
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USA Organization Changes Announced to Support New GOSP

November 14th, 2016
The Utilities Service Alliance (USA) Board of Directors approved organizational changes to the alliance’s professional staff in support of the governance and oversight model announced in October. Through Dec. 31, Jeff Helsel, Director of Performance Sustainability, and Tim Donovan, Director of Fleet Improvement and Support, will lead the transition of the organization, its duties and...
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USA Gap Focus and Training Excellence Efforts Are Underway

November 14th, 2016
The Utilities Service Alliance (USA) started the process of assessing and documenting the performance of its members in the four areas identified for improvement in its new Governance, Oversight, Support and Perform (GOSP) model.That process, approved by USA’s Board of Directors as part of sweeping changes it requested in September, includes developing an assessment and...
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USA Delivers Significant Indirect Cost Savings Results with New GOSP

November 14th, 2016
The Utilities Service Alliance (USA) estimates that changes to its governance model approved by the Board of Directors at its Nov. 1 meeting will provide member stations with more than 10,000 person-hours of indirect cost savings.USA estimates include the hours saved by eliminating face-to-face meetings, reducing USA assessment support and reducing Key Performance Indicator (KPI)...
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USA announces pending retirement of President and CEO Carl Parry

November 3rd, 2016
The Utilities Service Alliance (USA) Board of Directors has announced that President and CEO Carl Parry has decided to retire effective Feb. 1, 2017. Parry, who has led USA since its incorporation in 1996, submitted his intention to retire at the Nov. 1, 2016 USA Board of Director’s meeting. The board named John Christensen, USA...
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USA Provides Multiple Levels of Support for Member Refueling Outages

October 25th, 2016
For more than 20 years, the Utilities Service Alliance (USA) has been helping its members maximize refueling outages with ready access to industry expertise, best practices and skilled craft workers. Currently two of seven USA plants have units in refueling outages. They are not only replacing used fuel, but also undertaking a large number of maintenance...
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Good neighbors show up in droves

October 25th, 2016
Author: Margie Church, communications consultant, Xcel Energy’s Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant
Dreary weather didn't keep Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant's good neighbors from attending its recent open house. Approximately 750 people of all ages stopped in the plant’s training center to tour the control room simulator, try science experiments, play games and learn about varied professions. The open house theme, "Good Neighbors for 45 Years," celebrated the...
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STP, Xcel Achieve Combined $1.1M Savings Through USA Supplier Agreement

October 24th, 2016
Utilities Service Alliance (USA) members South Texas Project (STP) and Xcel Energy’s Monticello station recently achieved more than $1.1 million in combined Total Cost of Ownership savings recently through the use of a USA supplier agreement with ARES Security Corporation.The savings/cost avoidance was realized due to Security Post realignment where the ARES Security Product AVERT...
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USA communication survey results are in, gift card winners announced

October 18th, 2016
Although most respondents have a positive view of membership in the Utilities Service Alliance (USA), a recent survey of employees at USA stations shows a large percentage don’t know the value the alliance returns. The survey, offered online between Sept. 21 and Oct. 4, had more than 1,100 responses. It found that approximately 44 percent of...
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USA fleet members saved more than $20 million on Supply Chain so far in 2016

October 18th, 2016
So far in 2016, Utilities Service Alliance (USA) fleet members have realized nearly $12 million in combined First Cost savings by purchasing services and supplies through USA supply agreements. Through three quarters, alliance members are on track for savings comparable to 2015, when base agreement savings totaled approximately $15.8 million for the entire fiscal year....
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EN celebrates Nuclear Science Week

October 18th, 2016
To recognize National Nuclear Science Week Energy Northwest's Jamie Dunn, engineer senior, discusses the benefits of nuclear energy with students at Enterprise Middle School Oct. 18 in West Richland, Wash. Kaitlin Carter, Mat Dado, Nykki Drake, Kevin Eldrige and Blain Highland also supported the event. (John Dobken photo)
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Highlighting Energy Northwest career opportunities to veterans

October 17th, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest Public Affairs
Energy Northwest employees shared their nuclear industry career advice with service members, veterans and military spouses preparing to transition to a different work environment during two events.Washington stateMichael Pattan, security training specialist; Steven Cooper, fire marshal senior; and Kelley Ferrantelli, recruiter, attended the third annual Washington state Service Member for Life Transition Summit and Career...
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USA to realign operational improvement efforts

October 11th, 2016
In response to member needs identified by its Board of Directors, the Utilities Service Alliance (USA) will realign its operational improvement efforts to better integrate with current industry, economic, and INPO improvement initiatives.  These changes to USA’s Governance, Oversight, Support and Perform (GOSP) model will allow USA to concentrate fleet focus on specific performance gap...
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State Democrats support Columbia

September 29th, 2016
Author: Energy Northwest Public Affairs
During the last weekend in September, the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, representing all state Democrats, passed resolution 786 supporting Columbia Generating Station.“We acknowledge [Columbia Generating Station] as a critical part of low-carbon electrical power generation in Washington state and the Pacific Northwest,” the resolution said.Drafted by local scientist Jim Conca and Benton County Democrats, the resolution...
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USA members realize $48 million in savings in 2015

September 28th, 2016
More than $48 million: That’s the amount of money members of the Utilities Service Alliance (USA) saved in 2015 through a combination of programs that helped them run more safely, reliably and efficiently, and Supply Chain agreements that decrease the costs of purchasing services and owning components and equipment. As USA’s fiscal year 2016 nears...
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Energy Northwest nominated for Employer of the Year

September 28th, 2016
Author: Kevin Shaub, Energy Northwest
Kelley Ferrantelli, Human Resources, and Matt Evans, Maintenance, speak with a military member about job opportunities during a career fair at Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma, Wash. last year. (John Dobken photo)The Association of Washington Business has nominated Energy Northwest as a finalist for Employer of the Year. The Employer of the Year award recognizes an...
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Monticello Safety & HU Fair fun, educational

September 28th, 2016
Author: Margie Church, communications consultant, Xcel Energy’s Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant
Station employees began their recent Safety & Human Performance Fair with a brisk walk! Taking the 1.6 mile path to the Training Center was a great way to get our minds ready to think only about safety and human performance issues and appreciate the changing landscape that autumn brings to Minnesota. About 800 pieces of...
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USA Survey Seeking Input to Hone Communication

September 27th, 2016
Author: John Christensen, Vice President of Operational Performance
 The Utilities Service Alliance (USA) has launched an effort to improve its effectiveness at communicating with member utilities, employees and industry peers. Part of the effort is a communications survey that seeks to learn the preferences and opinions of audiences all across the alliance. The alliance has an online survey available and invites employees and...
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USA renews agreement with Frham Safety Products Inc., multiple winner of USA Materials Supplier of the Year

September 18th, 2016
Author: Margaret Vinsant, USA Manager of Supplier Relations
The Utilities Service Alliance has renewed its agreement with Frham Safety Products Inc. USA members chose Frham Safety as their Materials Supplier of the Year in 2014 and 2016. “Frham Safety demonstrated its commitment to delivering the nuclear promise by lowering prices on more than 5 percent of the items in the agreement and maintaining...
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Personnel sharing has many benefits for USA/STARS members

September 9th, 2016
Author: Tim Donovan, USA Director - Fleet Projects and Programs
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Labor Day is “a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” It’s also a great time to recognize the contributions of the Utilities Service Alliance (USA)/STARS Personnel Sharing Program – which enables members to borrow and share...
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USA sponsors Purdue University student at NEI Radiation Protection Conference

September 5th, 2016
Author: Rick Adams, USA Site Representative/CFAM
The Utilities Service Alliance (USA) sponsored Purdue University student Josh Young’s attendance at the Nuclear Energy Institute’s (NEI) annual conference on radiation protection July 31-Aug. 3 in St Petersburg, Fla. In addition to sponsoring Young, USA’s Rick Adams, Corporate Functional Area Manager for Radiation Protection and Chemistry, attended the conference as a mentor for Young....
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Heathman retires from USA

July 29th, 2016
Author: Carl Parry, USA
Marline Heathman, USA Manager of Finance & Administration (shown center) retired July 28 after 21 years of service. Prior to working with USA, Marline was located at the Wolf Creek Generating Station. Marline's responsibilities will be divided between Sarah Blaufuss, USA Office Manager (shown right) and Becky Ballard, CPA (shown left). Marline lives in Shawnee, Kansas with her husband Terry, a...
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NRC Commissioner visits Prairie Island

July 25th, 2016
Author: Lisa Kuehl, Prairie Island
NRC Commissioner Kristine Svinicki visited the Prairie Island Nuclear Plant July 14 to take a tour of the plant and meet with employees and leadership. The Commissioner spoke about NRC regulations and their impact on our plant. Senior leadership discussed with the Commissioner the current economic and state regulatory environment, impacts on energy and the...
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Monticello celebrates 45 years

July 25th, 2016
Author: Margie Church, Monticello
Xcel Energy’s Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant celebrated an important milestone in its history by reaching 45 years of commercial operation on June 30. Employees enjoyed telling stories of “the old days,” over cake and coffee served to all. They also signed a commemorative banner now displayed around the site. “It was a great opportunity to stop and thank our employees...
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Rausch Reelected to 2nd Term as USA Board Chairman

July 25th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
The USA board of directors elected Timothy S. (Tim) Rausch to a second term as its Chairman at its July 12 meeting in Sandy, Utah. Tim, who is also Senior Vice President and Chief Nuclear Officer for Talen Energy, is responsible for the operation of its Susquehanna nuclear power station in northeastern Pennsylvania. His new term runs from July...
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USA Suppliers of the Year announced

July 25th, 2016
Author: Jim Kitchens, USA
The votes are in. The USA Suppliers of the Year are Frham, Material Supplier of the Year, and Rolls-Royce, Services Supplier of the Year. The winners were announced at USA’s 22nd Annual Executive Summit recently. Suppliers are chosen for this prestigious award by representatives from the twelve USA member utilities. Fleet members complete evaluations and...
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USA Executive Summit recap

July 25th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
Gathering in the western Rockies with some of the most influential leaders in the commercial nuclear power industry, nearly 350 professionals representing members and guests of the Utilities Service Alliance (USA) Fleet and more than 110 supplier companies – a majority of the world’s leading nuclear vendors and suppliers – met last week at Utah’s Snowbird Resort for the Annual...
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Columbia’s CDBI performance best in the nuclear industry

July 25th, 2016
Author: Dave Kettering, Energy Northwest Design Engineering Manager
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission Region IV selected Columbia Generating Station to be one of eight plants for a Component Design Basis Inspection pilot program (reduction in the duration of CDBI from five weeks to three weeks). Inspectors performed the Environmental Qualification Program inspection May 9-13 and the conventional components inspection from June 6-24. Preparation for the inspection began in December...
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Susquehanna welcomes TEPCO representatives

June 16th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
Representatives from EPRI, their contractor Rhombus, Tokyo Electric Power Corporation (TEPCO), and USA Member Station Susquehanna Nuclear tested an experimental neutron detection system at Susquehanna Station. The tests support post-accident clean up and decommissioning activities at the three damaged Fukushima Daiichi units in Japan. The new detector technology is intended to rapidly detect neutron radiation in the presence of extremely high...
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Susquehanna hosts Equipment Reliability Working Group

June 16th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
USA fleet member Susquehanna Nuclear recently welcomed more than 75 nuclear professionals representing each member of the nuclear power stations in the United States to the East Mountain Business Center located just outside Wilkes Barre, Pa., for the Equipment Reliability Working Group Meeting. Susquehanna’s Chief Nuclear Officer and USA Board Chair kicked-off the meeting. Tim welcomed the group and discussed the importance...
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Prairie Island is home to falcon babies

June 15th, 2016
Author: Lisa Kuehl, Prairie Island
The Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant is proud to announce the addition of five peregrine falcon babies this year to their site population. A nest box atop of the plant’s Unit 1 Containment dome has been home to annual hatchings of falcon babies since the first box was installed in 1994. The young falcons - technically called “eyasses” -...
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Xcel honored for supporting military members

June 13th, 2016
Author: Lacey Golonka and Tom Bullington, Xcel
Leadership and business practices at Xcel Energy gained them recognition for supporting National Guardsmen and Reservists while they serve our country. The company recently received the Pro-Patria award, the highest honor bestowed by the State of Minnesota Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) Committee, a U.S. Department of Defense office. “It’s an honor...
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NRC officially accepts STP’s LAR for review

June 13th, 2016
Author: Buddy Eller, STP
STP received official notification from the NRC recently that its Shutdown Bank Control Rod D6 License Amendment Request (LAR) has been accepted for review. The next step in the review process is an NRC audit, scheduled the week of June 28 in Washington, D.C. In late May, STP provided requested supplemental information to the NRC on its Shutdown Bank Control Rod D6...
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Comanche Peak completes outage successfully

June 10th, 2016
Author: Mitch Warren, Comanche Peak
Comanche Peak Unit 1 completed a breaker-to-breaker run and began its 18th refueling outage May 7 emphasizing safety, quality and then schedule, within 30 days, 3 hours. “Comanche Peak had no challenges to their nuclear safety event goal and successfully met the radiological safety superior site target dose goal of 36 REM,” said Doug Davis, USA Maintenance CFAM, Comanche Peak Nuclear...
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Exceeding ALARA standards, Security receives trophy

June 10th, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest
The Nuclear Security Team took home Columbia Generating Station’s recently created collective radiation exposure trophy for the month of April. The trophy is awarded each month to the department that achieves superior performance in dose savings and supporting examples of how dose reduction was demonstrated. During April, Security held second quarter tactical drills throughout Columbia Generating Station and in the...
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New USA supplier PIPELINE

May 31st, 2016
Author: Ricky Myers, PIPELINE
USA is pleased to introduce one of its newest suppliers PIPELINE PIPELINE provides advanced technology solutions for nuclear outage, on-line and capital project work execution optimization. Their industry-leading solution, Syntempo®, is an integrated backbone for the next generation OCC. Syntempo automates work progress collection and provides a real-time view of the schedule and automatically informs all parties of any threats to critical...
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USA supplier Areva awarded three patents

May 18th, 2016
Author: Curtis Roberts, Areva
USA supplier AREVA was recently awarded three patents for employee inventions that were developed to enhance the safe operations of existing nuclear reactors and to recycle a rare material from used control rod assemblies. “At AREVA, our employees are committed to innovating solutions that sustain and advance the nuclear energy industry,” said Marty Parece, vice president of Products and Technology for...
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Team Susquehanna achieves one year OSHA free

May 16th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
USA fleet member Talen Energy’s Susquehanna Nuclear has been challenged for years with Industrial Safety issues. In 2010 alone, Susquehanna experienced an average of one OSHA Recordable PER MONTH. Susquehanna leadership was frustrated to see personnel getting injured, and its station delivering some of the lowest performance in industrial safety in the U.S. “Injuries were...
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Two down, two to go

May 16th, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest
Activities performed during Refueling and Maintenance Outages support the safe and reliable operations of nuclear facilities. Four Utilities Service Alliance plants planned to perform refueling and maintenance tasks. DC Cook Nuclear Plant Unit 1 and Susquehanna Unit 1 Nuclear Plant recently connected to the grid, and Salem and Comanche Peak are currently performing their outage. Since January, Dick Ehr, corporate functional area...
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Energy Northwest is top five STEM employer

May 13th, 2016
Author: Kevin Shaub, Energy Northwest
Victory Media recognized USA fleet member Energy Northwest for its hiring practices and career path opportunities, workforce diversity in STEM positions and outreach to, and alignment with, STEM education programs. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math.The 2016 STEM Jobs-Approved Employers list rates companies on their responsiveness to creating and filling high-demand, high-growth STEM...
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Fermi 2’s new rotor arrives

May 13th, 2016
Author: Stephen Tait, Fermi 2
USA fleet member Fermi 2’s new main generator rotor arrived on site in late April — reaching the end of a long journey from California. In 2015, Fermi 2 purchased the rotor from San Onofre Nuclear Generator Station, or SONGS, in California. That plant is now shut down. Ron Freeman led the effort to get the rotor to Fermi. He is...
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Comanche Peak achieves performance indicator milestone

May 13th, 2016
Author: Mitch Warren, Comanche Peak
In April, USA fleet member Comanche Peak reached a WANO/INPO Performance indicator milestone. Both units achieved 100 points, a perfect score, based upon equipment reliability and human performance over the previous 18 months. The PI Index measures 11 key indicators that reflect overall performance of the station and units. The index is calculated using a combination of WANO and INPO performance...
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USA chemistry functional area progress report

May 13th, 2016
Author: Kevin Jepson, USA Chemistry CFAM and Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant Site Rep
The USA Chemistry functional area has had a busy start to the year. Similar to the other functional areas, Chemistry implemented its first Functional Area Scorecard (FAS). The CFAM group benchmarked other fleets to determine how to best monitor fleet performance, and incorporated those learnings into the FAS. The Chemistry Peer Team is also busy addressing plant issues that impact...
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Monticello hosts INPO instructor workshop

May 13th, 2016
Author: Dave Tombers, Senior Communications Consultant
One of the major milestones toward becoming a qualified nuclear instructor is to complete the Institute of Nuclear Power Operators (INPO) Instructor Certification Program. The Instructor Certification Program is a standard Instructor Certification Program based on guidelines from the industry. The program provides training on a standard set of tasks that each student learns to perform using their utility-specific procedures....
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New technology initiative drives innovation & cost savings

April 18th, 2016
Author: Jeff Dehn, Xcel
Over the last few years, Xcel Energy’s corporate management teams have promoted the investigation of new and unique technologies to drive innovation to improve production and efficiency. This strategy has resulted in the creation of a tool that uses already-in-place equipment data tracking software to locate, map, and display graphic pictures of plant equipment. This...
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Energy Northwest captures safety award

April 15th, 2016
Author: Kevin Shaub, Energy Northwest
The American Public Power Association this week awarded Energy Northwest first place in its 2015 Safety Awards of Excellence for safe operating practices. EN received top honors in the category for utilities with between one and four million worker hours. "We're proud of the service we provide to the region," said Grover Hettel, vice president for Operations, "but above all...
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USA personnel offer 246 years of experience for Cook refueling outage

April 15th, 2016
Author: Dave Lefor, Cook
Membership does have its privileges, and USA member Cook Plant personnel openly welcomed the 15 peers from other USA sites in support of the Cook Unit 1 Refueling Outage this spring. “The experience offered from our USA peers is outstanding,” said Tim Farrish, Cook Plant Site USA Shared Personal Liaison. “We have a well-trained group of professionals from our partner stations...
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STP files LAR for control rod bank

April 15th, 2016
Author: Buddy Eller, STP
On Thursday, April 7, STP filed a License Amendment Request (LAR) with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to permanently change the Unit 1 Technical Specifications to operate without Shutdown Bank Control Rod D6. Prior to the submittal, internal and independent third party reviews – including USA partners Comanche Peak -- were completed. While preparing to restart following a scheduled refueling outage --...
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USA outage photo: Susquehanna feedwater heater replacement

April 15th, 2016
Author: Chi
Workers at Susquehanna Unit 1 replaced three feedwater heaters during this outage. The team took the heaters out of the Turbine Building by removing wall panels approximately three stories in the air to mobile platforms and then lowering them to the ground.
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Susquehanna Electrical Maintenance kicks-it with ‘Chiller Crew’

April 13th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
USA fleet member Susquehanna and its Electrical Maintenance “Chiller Crew” has a new crew member—his name is “Bill,” short for “Buffalo Bill” or “Water Buffalo.” These names will all become clear in a moment. At Susquehanna, when a Chiller pump-down of refrigerant is required, the on-board pump-down compressor is used. There is a Condenser on this pump-down unit which has a...
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USA fleet monitoring situation in Belgium

March 23rd, 2016
Author: Buddy Eller, STP & Joe Delmar, PSEG
Our hearts go out to Belgium after the vicious coordinated attacks throughout their country. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security noted that there have been no specific, credible threats to the United States. Belgium's nuclear safety regulator asked all non-essential staff at the Doel and Tihange nuclear power plants to go home on Tuesday. This was one of many measures taken nationwide...
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USA rep gears up to improve outage performance

March 23rd, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest
Working with Utilities Service Alliance fleet members, Columbia’s USA site representative and corporate functional area manager for outages Dick Ehr is working with his peer group to improve outage performance at all 10 USA nuclear facilities. “The work completed during a refueling and maintenance outage supports the safe and reliable operation of nuclear plants,” Ehr said. “The development of common USA outage processes...
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STP WIN Chapter host local high school students

March 21st, 2016
Author: Buddy Eller, STP
In early March, STP’s Women in Nuclear (WIN) chapter hosted a POWERSET symposium in recognition of National Women’s History Month. More than 100 students and faculty attended from local area high schools. The trip to STP was an opportunity to not only learn about potential careers in the nuclear industry but to receive information regarding education and skills needed in...
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Selection process for USA Suppliers of the Year

March 18th, 2016
Author: Joe Delmar, PSEG Nuclear
The selection process for 2015 USA Suppliers of the Year is now underway at each USA fleet member. Each year fleet members vote for the top USA suppliers in both the Materials and Services categories. To make the ballot this year a supplier must have been used by at least half of our members and document at least 10% savings...
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STEM principles spark community interest

March 18th, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest
The occasional squeak of a rubber sneaker could be heard on the wood floor of the Marie Curie STEM Elementary School gymnasium in Pasco, Wash., March 12. But the 300 kids on the basketball court weren't shooting hoops. They were taking part in USA fleet member Energy Northwest Women in Nuclear's annual Kids Engineering Day, an annual event to...
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Columbia has lowest fuel costs

March 18th, 2016
Author: John Dobken, Energy Northwest
An analysis published this week in Platts’ Nuclear Fuel found Columbia Generating Station had the lowest nuclear fuel cost of 28 plants surveyed across the country. Columbia’s fuel cost for fiscal year 2013 was 5.99 mills per kilowatt-hour of generation. A mill is a 10th of a cent. The average for the 28 plants surveyed is 8.16 mills per...
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Prairie Island hosts Girl Scouts

March 18th, 2016
Author: Alicia Grave, Prairie Island
USA fleet member Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant hosted a third annual Girl Scout Nuclear Science and Technology event recently. The event has taken place at the Training Center for all three years. The event is hosted annually by Grow Women in Non-Traditional Roles (GROW) and Women in Nuclear (WIN) volunteers. It was staffed with...
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Cook recognized for dry cask campaign

March 14th, 2016
Author: Bill Downey, Cook
In the nuclear industry, achievement is good, but it’s even better if you set the bar for Excellence. Once again, USA’s Cook Nuclear Plant’s Dry Cask Loading Team has done just that after recently being presented with two awards from the Holtec Users Group. The awards were given in recognition of the team’s industry leading cask loading dose performance and innovation...
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PSEG Nuclear names Sena new president

February 26th, 2016
Author: Joe Delmar, PSEG Nuclear
USA fleet member PSEG announced recently that it named nuclear industry veteran, Peter Sena, President of PSEG Nuclear. Sena will report to William Levis, President of PSEG’s Power business. Robert Braun, Chief Nuclear Officer, will report to Sena. Sena served as Chief Nuclear Officer at First Energy Corporation culminating a 15-year career in a variety...
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USA engineers share during EWeek

February 16th, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest
Engineers are a vital part of the nuclear industry and next week Utilities Service Alliance fleet is commemorating EWeek. To recognize the national event USA fleet engineers shared why they became an engineer. Katherine Torres, Hope Creek Engineering branch manager, PSEG Nuclear I became an engineer because I’ve always been a team player and enjoy...
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Fermi gets international visitors

February 12th, 2016
Author: Stephen Tait, Fermi 2
USA fleet member Fermi 2 is the only U.S. nuclear power plant with an international Emergency Preparedness Zone. The 10 miles around Fermi, a Utilities Service Alliance fleet member, reaches into part of Ontario, Canada. As such, the plant invites its neighbors across Lake Erie to the plant every year or two. In early February, police, fire and emergency response officials...
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USA taking leadership role with Delivering the Nuclear Promise

February 12th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
America’s nuclear energy facilities have launched a multi-year initiative to safely generate electricity that the nation uses more efficiently and economically. The initiative was announced in December by the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI), which is coordinating the multifaceted effort in tandem with member electric utilities and member power producers – including USA fleet members - the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO)...
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NRC approves licenses for STP Units 3 & 4

February 11th, 2016
Author: Buddy Eller, STP
On Tuesday, Feb. 9, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission completed its mandatory hearing on Nuclear Innovation North America’s (NINA) application for two Combined Licenses (COL) for STP Units 3 & 4. The Commission voted affirmatively to approve the licenses, finding the NRC Staff’s review adequate to make the necessary regulatory safety and environmental findings. The Commission’s decision clears the way for...
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Radiation Protection practices align with the Nuclear Promise

February 10th, 2016
Author: Richard Adams, Site Representative/Radiation Protection CFAM
The USA Radiation Protection groups are responding proactively to the industry initiative, Delivering the Nuclear Promise. The implementation of three initiatives will improve Radiation Protection practices at the USA nuclear plants.  One that may be invisible to most people at the sites is how often checks are performed on contamination instruments that have the ability...
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USA website is now mobile

February 10th, 2016
Author: Jim Kitchens, USA
You can now access the USA website from your mobile device. Use your cellphone or tablet and visit www.usainc.org. You’ll find a user friendly interface to help you navigate around the website while you are on the go.
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Cook yields significant waste & recycling results

February 3rd, 2016
Author: Dave Lefor, Cook
Generation of different types of waste at the Cook Plant occurs daily. Waste that is normally generated at your home is placed in the trash and hauled away by the local trash service. At USA fleet member Cook Plant, waste must be handled a little differently due to regulations specific to the site size and type of operation. The Environmental Protection Agency...
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USA recognizes PSEG Nuclear's supply chain team

January 29th, 2016
Author: Joe Delmar, PSEG Nuclear
PSEG Nuclear received USA’s Super Saver award at the 2016 USA Supply Chain Winter Conference held recently. During calendar year 2015, PSEG saved approximately $4 million by taking advantage of the USA Supply Chain Management program. Historically USA presents the award to the member utility that achieved the best return on investment for the past...
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USA Communications team collaborates to highlight successes

January 20th, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest
The Utilities Service Alliance Communications team met at the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations recently to discuss improving USA visibility at each site and sharing best communication practices. To better align the communications team with the newly formed USA site representatives and corporate functional area managers, each communication member will support the site rep/CFAM at their corresponding plant. During the day-and-a-half meeting, members...
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Susquehanna exits Special Focus

January 20th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
Final results were conveyed to Talen Energy senior leaders recently upon formal completion of the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations’ (INPO) Evaluation of Susquehanna Nuclear, a member of Utility Services Alliance (USA), which took place in November of 2015. In a face-to-face meeting with INPO leaders at Talen Energy headquarters in Allentown’s Plaza Building, Talen...
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Susquehanna returns to Licensee Response Column

January 20th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
Upon successful completion of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s (NRC) Inspection Procedure 95001 in November 2015, Talen Energy’s Susquehanna Station expected Unit 1 and Unit 2 to be returned to Column 1 – the Licensee Response Column – in 2016. Based on the inspection results, Utilities Service Alliance (USA) member Susquehanna Station recently received correspondence from the NRC that announced Susquehanna Unit 1...
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Susquehanna hit record generation in 2015

January 20th, 2016
Author: Chip Palazzo, Susquehanna
Talen Energy’s Susquehanna Nuclear sent 20,561 GWhrs of electricity to the grid in 2015, the highest power production to come from Susquehanna’s dual unit Boiling Water Reactors in the Station’s 33 year history, reported Susquehanna Senior Engineer Jim Hennings in a recent update to the Station. “The previous production record of 19,492 GWhrs was set in 2009,” said Jim. Several factors contributed to...
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Columbia Generating Station breaks monthly generation record

January 19th, 2016
Author: Anna Markham, Energy Northwest
In December, Columbia Generating Station sent more megawatt-hours of electricity to the grid than in any month since its startup 31 years ago: 859,619 megawatt-hours of net generation. “This is a reflection of the hard work by the Columbia team to focus on equipment reliability; maintaining equipment backlogs within industry top quartile; and the implementation of modifications to improve plant generation. All...
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USA fleet’s 2016 strategic focus areas & key initiatives

January 19th, 2016
Author: Joe Delmar, PSEG Nuclear
The Utilities Service Alliance fleet has several strategic focus areas and key initiatives for 2016: Delivering the Nuclear Promise: USA will coordinate fleet support of industry actions and initiatives via the CFAMs and Core Peer Teams. Station Recovery: USA will coordinate fleet support of stations in Recovery by providing review and challenge of action plans, and supporting recovery needs as prioritized by the...
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Polson new site vice president at Fermi 2

January 18th, 2016
Author: Stephen Tait, Fermi 2
Keith Polson, a 27-year veteran of the nuclear industry, is the new site vice president at Fermi 2, a Utilities Service Alliance fleet member. Polson most recently was site vice president at the Browns Ferry Nuclear plant in Athens, Ala. “I’m pleased to welcome Keith to Fermi 2,” said Paul Fessler, Fermi 2’s senior vice president and Chief Nuclear Officer. “His...
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