US government-owned utility The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has approved a contract for replacement steam generators for Watts Bar 2 at a board of directors meeting on 13 February.

Although the Westinghouse PWR is still under construction, and due to complete in December 2015, the original steam generators were supplied decades ago before construction was stopped.

According to local newspaper the Chattanooga Times Free Press, the $160 million contract with Westinghouse is for four steam generators to be replaced because of corrosion issues.

So because of the length of the 40-year period of construction of Watts Bar 2, new steam generators will be needed to replace ones that have never operated under nuclear steam conditions.

The utility’s statement makes it clear that the equipment will not be needed soon: ‘Due to a long lead time, a contract for the eventual replacement of steam generators … was approved.’

Steam generators at Watts Bar 1 were replaced, after similar work at TVA’s Sequoyah 1 reactor.

TVA also operates three GE-built Browns Ferry BWRs. TVA said in its announcement about the board meeting that it had contracted for nuclear fuel fabrication services for Browns Ferry through 2025, although it did not name the vendor.

Photo Source: TVA