U.S. nuclear refueling outage days 1996-2018

Average length of refueling outages for U.S. nuclear plants from 1996 to 2018 (in days)

U.S. nuclear refueling outage days 1996-2018 The statistic represents the average length of outages for nuclear power plants in the United States between 1996 and 2018. In 2018, as of September 2018, this figure stood at 33.5 outage days.
US nuclear refueling outage days

America’s electricity needs are met by a selection of energy carriers including coal, oil and natural gas, as well as nuclear fuel and renewable energy sources. Despite the wide variety of fuels that can be used, the country’s power generation structure consists primarily of coal and nuclear power to provide its citizens with an around-the-clock “baseload” supply of electricity – this is what makes nuclear power an essential and crucial element of the U.S. power generation mix. In spring and fall, when demand for electricity is lowest, a limited number of nuclear reactors are shut down for refueling and maintenance.

Since spent fuel rods are no longer useful in sustaining a nuclear reaction, nuclear units are required to dispose of some of the spent fuel rods and conduct other routine maintenance and repair activities. The level of outage days at operational nuclear power plants in the United States dramatically decreased in the 1990s, when plants reduced the number of refueling outage days from 80.5 in 1997 to 40 in 1999. In 2017, there were 33.5 refueling outage days at U.S. nuclear power plants, down from 45.5 in 2012.
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Average length of refueling outages for U.S. nuclear plants from 1996 to 2018 (in days)

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Average number of days
2018*33.5
201733.5
201633.5
201535.5
201436.5
201340.5
201245.5
201144.5
201040
200940.5
200837.5
200739.5
200638.5
200537.5
200441.5
200340
200232.5
200136.5
200043.5
199940
199850.5
199780.5
199665.5
Average number of days
2018*33.5
201733.5
201633.5
201535.5
201436.5
201340.5
201245.5
201144.5
201040
200940.5
200837.5
200739.5
200638.5
200537.5
200441.5
200340
200232.5
200136.5
200043.5
199940
199850.5
199780.5
199665.5
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The statistic represents the average length of outages for nuclear power plants in the United States between 1996 and 2018. In 2018, as of September 2018, this figure stood at 33.5 outage days.
US nuclear refueling outage days

America’s electricity needs are met by a selection of energy carriers including coal, oil and natural gas, as well as nuclear fuel and renewable energy sources. Despite the wide variety of fuels that can be used, the country’s power generation structure consists primarily of coal and nuclear power to provide its citizens with an around-the-clock “baseload” supply of electricity – this is what makes nuclear power an essential and crucial element of the U.S. power generation mix. In spring and fall, when demand for electricity is lowest, a limited number of nuclear reactors are shut down for refueling and maintenance.

Since spent fuel rods are no longer useful in sustaining a nuclear reaction, nuclear units are required to dispose of some of the spent fuel rods and conduct other routine maintenance and repair activities. The level of outage days at operational nuclear power plants in the United States dramatically decreased in the 1990s, when plants reduced the number of refueling outage days from 80.5 in 1997 to 40 in 1999. In 2017, there were 33.5 refueling outage days at U.S. nuclear power plants, down from 45.5 in 2012.
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