Tuesday, December 21, 2010
ATLANTA (AP) -- A federal advisory panel says it believes the latest design of Westinghouse Electric Co.'s AP1000 nuclear reactor is safe to build and operate.
The Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards announced its nonbinding decision Tuesday. The panel advises the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which is expected to make a final decision on the reactor as early as next year.
The advisory committee's conclusion is dependent on upcoming reviews of whether the reactor could safely withstand the crash of a large jetliner and separate cooling issues.
Still, the conclusion is a step forward for the AP1000. Utilities have selected that reactor to power as many as seven new nuclear power plants that could be built in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina.
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)