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South Field Energy Breaks Ground for 1,182-MW Power Plant

LCG, May 16, 2019--South Field Energy LLC announced yesterday its groundbreaking for an 1,182-MW, combined-cycle electric generating facility in Columbiana County, Ohio. The natural gas-fired facility is scheduled to commence operations in mid-2021 and represents a $1.3 billion investment.

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Exelon to Shut Down Three Mile Island by September 30, 2019

LCG, May 10, 2019--Exelon Generation announced Wednesday that Three Mile Island Generating Station Unit 1 (TMI) will shut down by September 30, 2019. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) had approved back in 2009 a 20-year extension for the nuclear energy facility through 2034.

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Industry News

New Materials May Make Capacity Upgrades of Lines Easier

LCG, Mar. 4, 2004--Composite materials are being tested in newly designed power lines that have the advantages of not sagging like traditional lines, and of allowing a greater amount of power to flow without adding significant bulk.

Companies developing the lines use substitutes for the steel that makes up the central core of traditional power cables, around which aluminum stands used to transmit electricity are wrapped. Because the composite materials, which use carbon fiber, glass and epoxy, provide the same strength as steel cores with larger diameters, they make it possible to wrap more aluminum around lines' cores. At the same time, they conduct less than steel, and sag up to 90% less, their makers say. This latter feature could be useful in preventing blackouts due to lines that heat up, and come to rest on trees or the ground.

The largest-scale test yet underway is planned by a local utility in Kingman, Kan., which has agreed to pay for a test of a 21-mile-long line, according to the New York Times. Other tests are underway in North Dakota and Minnesota, where another company will see how well its line performs in the local weather conditions. The Department of Energy is contributing financial assistance to a test near Fargo, N.D., scheduled for the winter. If the tests are considered successful, more widespread adoption will depend on the willingness of utilities to replace older lines, which can operate for more than 50 years without becoming seriously degraded.
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