St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant

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St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant
St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant photo D Ramey Logan.jpg
Overhead view of St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant
CountryUnited States
LocationPort St. Lucie, St. Lucie County, Florida
Coordinates27°20′55″N 80°14′47″W / 27.34861°N 80.24639°W / 27.34861; -80.24639Coordinates: 27°20′55″N 80°14′47″W / 27.34861°N 80.24639°W / 27.34861; -80.24639
Construction beganUnit 1: July 1, 1970
Unit 2: June 2, 1977
Commission dateUnit 1: December 21, 1976
Unit 2: August 8, 1983
Construction cost$4.614 billion (2007 USD)[1]
Owner(s)Florida Power & Light
Operator(s)Florida Power & Light
Nuclear power station
Reactor typePWR
Reactor supplierCombustion Engineering
Cooling sourceAtlantic Ocean
Thermal capacity2 × 3020 MWth
Power generation
Units operational2 × 940 MW [2]
Make and modelCE 2-loop (DRYAMB)
Nameplate capacity1,880 MW [2]
Capacity factor95.29% (2017)
84.05% (lifetime)
Annual net output16,428 GWh (2017)
External links
WebsiteSt. Lucie Nuclear Plant
CommonsRelated media on Commons

St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant is a twin nuclear power station located on Hutchinson Island, near Port St. Lucie in St. Lucie County, Florida. Both units are Combustion Engineering pressurized water reactors. Florida Power & Light commissioned the station in 1976 and continues to operate the station. Minor shares of Unit 2 are owned by the Florida Municipal Power Agency (8.81%) and the Orlando Utilities Commission (6.08%).[citation needed]

The plant contains two nuclear reactors in separate containment buildings. However, the plant does not have the classic hyperboloid cooling towers found at many inland reactor sites; instead, it uses nearby ocean water for coolant of the secondary system.

In 2003 the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) extended the operating licenses of the St. Lucie units by twenty years, to March 1, 2036 for Unit 1 and April 6, 2043 for Unit 2.

Extended Power Uprate[edit]

In 2012, Extended Power Uprate modifications were completed, increasing the electric output from approximately 853 MW to 1,002 MW. The project involved replacing pipes, valves, pumps, heat exchangers, electrical transformers, and generators, some of which were original components of the plant.[3][4]

Surrounding population[edit]

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission defines two emergency planning zones around nuclear power plants: a plume exposure pathway zone with a radius of 10 miles (16 km), concerned primarily with exposure to, and inhalation of, airborne radioactive contamination, and an ingestion pathway zone of about 50 miles (80 km), concerned primarily with ingestion of food and liquid contaminated by radioactivity.[5]

The 2010 U.S. population within 10 miles (16 km) of Saint Lucie was 206,596, an increase of 49.7 percent in a decade, according to an analysis of U.S. Census data for The 2010 U.S. population within 50 miles (80 km) was 1,271,947, an increase of 37.0 percent since 2000. Cities within 50 miles include Port St. Lucie (7.8 miles to city center), Ft. Pierce (8 miles to city center) and West Palm Beach (42 miles to city center).

Seismic risk[edit]

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission's estimate of the risk each year of an earthquake intense enough to cause core damage to the reactor at Saint Lucie was 1 in 21,739, according to an NRC study published in August 2010.[6][7]

Hurricane risk[edit]

In 2016 St. Lucie Power Plant shut down because of Hurricane Matthew.[8] In 2017 the plant did not shut down due to Hurricane Irma.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "EIA - State Nuclear Profiles". Retrieved 3 October 2017.
  2. ^ a b "St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant | Florida Department of Environmental Protection". Retrieved 2020-01-15.
  3. ^ "HomeTown News Gift Certificates". Retrieved 5 August 2018.
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2006-10-02. Retrieved 2017-06-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ Bill Dedman (March 17, 2011), "What are the odds? US nuke plants ranked by quake risk",, retrieved April 19, 2011
  7. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2017-05-25. Retrieved 2011-06-17.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ "St. Lucie Power Plant shut down because of Hurricane Matthew". Retrieved 5 August 2018.
  9. ^ "FPL nuclear facilities weathered Irma without sustaining damage". Retrieved 5 August 2018.

External links[edit]