Vincent Farnsworth 6:31 p.m., Dec. 4
Nuclear Regulatory Commission finds fault with Mitsubishi's calculations on failed San Onofre generators
Shuttered plant operator Southern California Edison downplays responsibility to oversee work of their preferred contractor
Southern California Edison, majority owner and operator of the failed San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station in northern San Diego County, announced Sunday (September 22) that the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission has “identified flaws in how Mitsubishi Heavy Industries used its computer codes to design the failed steam generators” at the plant.
Specifically, the flawed calculations, per Edison, failed to properly model the vibration that would occur in steam tubes under load, which caused many to prematurely weaken and one to burst, releasing a small amount of radiation into the atmosphere that led to a prolonged emergency shutdown before Edison abandoned hopes of restarting operations at the facility earlier this year.
Edison vice president and chief nuclear officer Pete Dietrich was quick to offload as much of the blame for the failures at San Onofre onto the partner Edison selected for implementation of the new generator design as possible.
“Mitsubishi designed the system. Mitsubishi built the system. Mitsubishi's system failed. They are the experts. SCE was the customer,” said Dietrich via release.
Despite the findings of negligence, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission did not impose any fines on Mitsubishi or Edison as a result.
More like this:
- Regulator points finger at Edison, Mitsubishi — Sept. 24, 2013
- San Onofre just one of many troubled nuclear plants in 2012 — March 11, 2013
- Nuclear Regulatory Commission will launch Boxer's requested investigation — Feb. 11, 2013
- San Onofre Operator to Present Plan to Resume Operations — May 4, 2012
- San Onofre Operator Developing Plans to Bring Nuclear Reactors Back Online — April 24, 2012