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NUCLEAR INDUSTRY SELECTS FIRST ADVANCED PLANT DESIGNS FOR DETAILED ENGINEERING DEVELOPMENT

 WASHINGTON, Jan. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. Council for Energy Awareness issued the following:
 The U.S. nuclear power industry today announced it has selected two manufacturers to negotiate funding agreements to develop detailed engineering for new advanced nuclear power plant designs under a joint program with utilities and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).
 The Advanced Reactor Corp. -- an industry corporation formed to support development of new plant designs -- has begun negotiating contracts with General Electric Co. and Westinghouse Electric Corp. to perform the "first-of-a-kind" engineering required for a standardized plant design proposed by each company.
 "The U.S. utility industry is today making a major investment in a secure energy future for America by making sure that designs for advanced nuclear power plants are available when we need them," said Sherwood H. Smith Jr., chairman of the Nuclear Power Oversight Committee (NPOC), the industry's chief policy-making body. "This cooperative engineering effort is a major milestone in the industry's strategy for creating the technical and legal framework that will allow utilities to order new nuclear units in the mid-1990s for operation early in the next decade."
 This engineering program is one of the "building blocks" of the industry's "Strategic Plan for Building New Nuclear Power Plants," a coordinated blueprint and schedule for action, released in 1990.
 First-of-a-kind engineering will produce standardized designs that will allow utilities to project firm construction costs and schedules before ordering a nuclear power plant. It goes beyond the design work submitted to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for review and certification of the design from a safety standpoint and results in engineering documents that can be used to begin selecting equipment and planning for plant construction.
 The Advanced Reactor Corp. selected the General Electric Advanced Boiling Water Reactor, a 1,300-megawatt power plant, and the Westinghouse AP600, a 600-megawatt pressurized-water power plant.
 Two other designs also being reviewed by the NRC for certification -- General Electric's Simplified Boiling Water Reactor and ABB/Combustion Engineering's System 80+ plant -- were also submitted to the Advanced Reactor Corp. "The electric utility industry strongly supports continued efforts to complete NRC certification of these designs to give utilities additional options for their specific needs in new nuclear plants, and we would hope that those designs receive support for first-of-a-kind of engineering in the future," Smith said.
 The 16 utilities that make up the Advanced Reactor Corp. have committed a total of more than $50 million to support engineering of the two designs. The manufacturers' contributions will also total more than $50 million. DOE will invest $100 million over five years, a portion of which will be returned to the government from sales of the two designs.
 Smith, who is also chairman of Raleigh, N.C.-based Carolina Power & Light Co., said that U.S. utilities and the federal government are jointly investing in the development of new nuclear plant designs because they recognize that many electric companies must begin planning now for the new plants needed to provide adequate supplies of clean electricity for future economic growth and environmental quality.
 "Advanced nuclear power plants -- based on the standardized designs that first-of-a-kind' engineering will produce, and licensed under the reformed licensing process approved by the last Congress -- will have a competitive edge on overall electricity generating costs," Smith said. "This is good news for consumers as their electric companies look for non-polluting sources of electricity to replace older plants and to meet anticipated growth in power demand. Nuclear plants have proven environmental advantages, and this cooperative engineering effort will help ensure their economic advantages as well."
 The Advanced Reactor Corp. expects to finalize contracts with General Electric and Westinghouse covering the funding, technical scope and schedule of the project in early spring of 1993. Completion of first-of-a-kind engineering work on the two designs is projected for 1996.
 The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) -- the utility industry's research and development arm -- shares primary responsibility with the Advanced Reactor Corp. for managing the engineering program and handles the program's technical and administrative functions.
 The 16 members of the Advanced Reactor Corp. are:
 American Electric Power Service Corp.
 Carolina Power & Light Co.
 Commonwealth Edison Co.
 Consolidated Edison Co.
 Duke Power Co.
 Florida Power & Light Co.
 GPU Nuclear (General Public Utilities)
 New York Power Authority
 Pennsylvania Power & Light Co.
 Philadelphia Electric Co.
 Public Service Electric & Gas
 Southern Nuclear Operating Co.
 TU (Texas Utilities) Electric
 Tennessee Valley Authority
 Union Electric Co.
 Wisconsin Electric Power Co.
 The U.S. Council for Energy Awareness (USCEA) is a private international trade and communications association of the nuclear power industry.
 -0- 1/11/93
 /CONTACT: Cathy Roche, Steve Unglesbee or Scott Peters of the U.S. Council for Energy Awareness, 202-293-0770 or, after hours/weekends, 703-644-8805/


CO: U.S. Council for Energy Awareness; Advanced Reactor Corp. ST: District of Columbia IN: OIL UTI SU:

TW -- DC018 -- 3608 01/11/93 14:32 EST
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Date:Jan 11, 1993
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