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BIG ROCK POINT BECOMES LONGEST RUNNING NUCLEAR POWER PLANT IN THE NATION

 JACKSON, Mich., Sept. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumers Power Company's Big Rock Point nuclear plant has become the longest running commercial nuclear power plant in the nation. The plant surpassed the previous record of 30 years and 92 days set by the Yankee nuclear power station located in Rowe, Mass., earlier this month. The Yankee plant ceased operation in 1991.
 Big Rock Point began operation on Dec. 8, 1962, and continues in service today with a generating capacity of 67 megawatts, enough power to serve a community of 38,000 people. The plant is located on northern Lake Michigan, four miles northeast of Charlevoix, Mich.
 David P. Hoffman, Consumers Power vice president of nuclear operations and a former Big Rock Point plant superintendent, credits employees for the longevity of the plant. "From the day the first shovel of dirt was turned to begin construction, the plant has been blessed with employees dedicated to proving that nuclear power is a clean, safe and economical means of generating electricity. Employees at the plant today carry on the excellence of their predecessors."
 Big Rock Point has a long history of noteworthy accomplishments. Conceived in the late 1950s as part of the Power Reactor Demonstration Program of the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), the plant was the world's first high power density boiling water reactor. The AEC's research program at Big Rock Point led to the development of more efficient nuclear fuels for the commercial nuclear power industry. The plant's reactor was also employed for a number of years to produce radioactive cobalt for medicine and industry.
 In 1977, Big Rock Point set a world record for continuous operation by remaining in service for 343 days. The plant's 95.5 percent availability to generate electricity in 1986 was the best of any General Electric-designed plant in the world that year.
 The American Nuclear Society named Big Rock Point a Nuclear Historic Landmark in 1991 for its contributions to the nuclear industry.
 Consumers Power Company, the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy Corporation (NYSE: CMS), is Michigan's largest natural gas and electric utility serving 6 million of the states's 9 and 1/2 million residents in 67 of the 68 Lower Peninsula counties.
 -0- 9/30/93
 /CONTACT: Charles E. MacInnis, News and Information of Consumers Power Company, 517-788-0333/
 (CMS)


CO: Consumers Power Company ST: Michigan IN: UTI OIL SU:

JG -- DE007 -- 7150 09/30/93 09:23 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 30, 1993
Words:400
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