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Saturday, September 7, 2013

SCE Releases SONGS Steam Generator Documents; MHI Info Page

Below is a press release from Southern California Edison.


Media Contact: Maureen Brown, (626) 302-2255

SCE Opens Digital Document Library, Making Public Key Documents Related to the Design of the San Onofre Replacement Steam Generators

Library Contains Nearly 100 Documents Totaling More Than 3,200 Pages,
Many Made Public for the First Time

ROSEMEAD, Calif., Sept. 4, 2013 — Southern California Edison (SCE) today opened the San Onofre Digital Document Library at www.SONGScommunity.com/library. The library makes public key documents related to the design of the replacement steam generators, whose malfunction resulted in the shutdown of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.

“The San Onofre Digital Document Library will help the public, elected officials and regulators better understand the history of the replacement steam generators that led to San Onofre’s closure,” said Ron Litzinger, president of SCE. “It is vitally important that we all achieve a full understanding of the facts so that future decisions by regulators and legislators are based on transparency and the highest quality information.”

The closure of the San Onofre nuclear plant earlier this year was the result of the failure of the plant’s replacement steam generators, which were designed and manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI). SCE previously announced that it had commenced the process of pursuing legal action against MHI to recover compensation for damages caused by the failure of MHI’s steam generators.

The San Onofre Digital Document Library contains a wide variety of documents, many made public for the first time. In total, the library contains nearly 100 documents, comprising more than 3,200 pages. The library supplements the numerous documents related to the replacement steam generators that SCE had previously made publicly available at SONGScommunity.com.

Some of the documents included in the library are partially redacted. The redactions were made because MHI has asserted that the redacted sections contain proprietary information that cannot be made public. SCE has asked MHI to agree that unredacted versions of these documents can be made public.
SCE is planning to include additional documents in the library, and is asking MHI to confirm that these additional documents can be placed in the library without redaction.
About Southern California Edison
An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of nearly 14 million via 4.9 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central, Coastal and Southern California. 


There are a large number of documents; let me point out some key portions for the layman to read.

This document details the relationship between Mitsubishi (who designed and built the SONGS replacement steam generators) and Southern California Edison (who bought the steam generators and who exercised some oversight on the whole project.)  It goes on to highlight key areas of design and manufacture that were selected for DRM or Design Review Meetings.  Some of these focus areas did in fact become determinants in the actual failures experienced, meaning that while the focus and attention were on the right topical considerations, the "let down," if you will, was in execution.  (In other words, it is not as if the failures occurred in designs / equipment not even mentioned in DRM material.)

The document then moves along to detail specific relations between SCE and MHI concerning the parts that eventually failed, as well as causal items (simple scale-up of previous designs not guaranteed to perform adequately, etc.) 

Another document, found here, explains the process behind the decision that the replacement steam generators did in fact satisfy 50.59 requirements.  A lot of noise was made on this by anti-nuclear activists back at the time this problem surfaced.

The rest of the material gets about as technical as anyone would like - and I note that while MHI has redacted portions of some of the material, it's significant that this much has been released at all.


In the interest of fairness it's important to note that MHI does in fact have a page of information itself.  That page can be found at this link.

Further historical links:

Mitsubishi receives order for 4 steam generators for SONGS

Mitsubishi delivers two steam generators for SONGS Unit 2

Mitsubishi delivers two steam generators for SONGS Unit 3

Mitsubishi release upon announcement of closure of SONGS

2:25 PM Eastern 9/7/2013

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