U.S. nuclear energy facilities continued operating at high levels of safety and reliability in 2013, according to data monitored by the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO) and the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO). As a group, the facilities that generate one-fifth of U.S. electricity supplies are approaching or already exceeding those goals.
In 2013, U.S. facilities operated at a median capability factor of 91%, according to the WANO data. This is the 10th straight year that a median capability factor of 91% or higher has been achieved.
The 2013 total of 69 unplanned automatic or manual shutdowns was up from the record lows set in 2011 and 2012, but the fourth-lowest level recorded in the past 12 years.
Ninety-four percent of U.S. facilities achieved zero fuel failures in 2013. This is the highest level ever recorded, and the 2013 mark is 21% greater than it was just six years earlier.