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FirstEnergy's Perry nuclear plant returns to service

FirstEnergy Corp.'s 1,268-MW Perry nuclear power plant returned to service on April 3 after a scheduled refueling and maintenance outage that began March 5.

The power station is operating at approximately 20% capacity, according to an April 3 news release. The company said in the statement that power levels will vary for several days as the facility returns to full output.

There were numerous maintenance services undertaken during the outage, including the exchange of 280 fuel assemblies; inspection of the unit's reactor vessel, turbine, electrical generator and cooling tower; and installation of a new transformer that supplies power from an off-site transmission network.

The plant comes online as the company moves to exit merchant generation and as its subsidiary, and Perry's operator, FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Co., may file for Chapter 11 protection, along with FirstEnergy Solutions Corp.