In the past, nuclear power plant (NPP) life requirements were 30 - 40 years. Today, those requirements have doubled as new NPPs need a 60-to-80-year design life. Factor in the emergency diesel generators (EDG) and station blackout generators (SBOs) that could have been built several years prior, as well as the need to be ready to run during the decommissioning phase, and we could be in a range of a 70-to-90-year design life. Today’s blog will focus on the impact of requiring a longer life design for the EDGs and SBOs as a consequence of the evolution of NPPs.
Since 2008, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been phasing in a series of “tiered” emission regulations to reduce harmful exhaust gas for diesel powered equipment. The standards require significant emission reductions of particulate matter (PM) and nitrogen oxides (NOx).
Today’s Tier 4 Final emission standards represent a 95% reduction in emission levels compared to non-regulated amounts. As government mandates, all new products must meet these requirements, but machine owners can still elect to use existing equipment.
Therefore, the responsibility solely falls on engine manufacturers to not only meet these requirements but do so while maintaining qualities that are advantageous to the rental power industry such as performance, reliability, productivity and cost.