Cook Plant Unit 2 About To Mark A Milestone

Unit 2 at the Cook nuclear power plant will soon begin its second life. On Sunday, the Unit 2 reactor will begin operating beyond its initial 40 year license period under the renewed license granted by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 2005. Cook plant spokesperson Bill Schalk spoke with WSJM News about the milestone.

“It’s kind of like the beginning of the second life and the next 20 years of operation,” Schalk said.

Schalk tells us Unit 1 started its second life in 2014. The facility near Bridgman will continue to operate through those licenses.

“We’re going to be around for a while,” Schalk said. “2034 for Unit 1, and 2037 for Unit 2.”

The plant could go on longer than that. Schalk says only the future will tell. To prepare for the extended life of Unit 2, Cook has been doing what it calls a Life Cycle Management program. That’s involved the replacement of several large components over the past few years. The Cook plant was first announced by Indiana Michigan Power in 1959, although the company hadn’t yet decided it would be nuclear. The plant’s construction permit was granted in 1969, and Unit 2 went online in 1978.