SC nuclear plant becoming 1st in US to go digital

By

Published:

 

SENECA, S.C. (AP) -- The digital revolution is finally reaching America's nuclear power plants.

Sometime in the next few weeks, technicians will finish installing digital controls for the operating and safety systems of a nuclear plant reactor in western South Carolina, a move being closely watched by other nuclear complexes.

In a nation where a digital blender can be bought for about $30 at Walmart, the Oconee Nuclear Station reactor will be the first of the 104 reactors in the United States not controlled with the same analog technology that brought the world cassette tapes and slide rules.

Duke Energy says the new system is self-contained, safe from hackers and as reliable as the old system. The utility says the digital panels should save them money by cutting down on unnecessary plant shutdowns.

____

Jeffrey Collins can be reached at __http://twitter.com/JSCollinsAP