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The 1.1 GW Unit 4 of the Vogtle nuclear power plant (US) reaches first criticality

Georgia Power has announced that the 1,117 MW fourth unit of the Vogtle nuclear power plant, located near Augusta in Georgia (United States), has reached first criticality. The Vogtle-4 reactor is expected to enter commercial operations in the second quarter of 2024. 

The Vogtle nuclear expansion project consists of two AP1000 reactors of 1,117 MW each (1,250 MW gross) on the site of the Vogtle nuclear power plant, currently composed of two 1,229 MW gross reactors commissioned in 1987 and 1989. The third unit entered commercial operations in August 2023. The new units are owned by Georgia Power (45.7%), an affiliate of Southern Company, and cooperatives and municipal utilities, including Oglethorpe Power (OGP, 30%), Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG, 22.7%) and the city of Dalton (1.6%). 

Vogtle-3 and Vogtle-4 are the first new nuclear reactors built in the United States in the last three decades, and the first AP1000 reactors built in the country. There are 93 nuclear reactors currently in operation for a total capacity of about 95 GW and nuclear accounted for 18% of the US' total generation in 2022. 

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