Fermi 2 Nuclear Plant Refueling Outage RF21

Project Dates:   12/01/21 – 04/15/22
UESI Project Director:  Bob Walcheski
UESI Project Manager:  Al Rogers
UESI Project Number: NUC2021153.00

The UESI work at the Fermi 2 Nuclear Plant is in support of the station refueling outage (RF21).  UESI has been contracted to work many non-diving RF21 projects (Torus Vent Header, Torus Vapor Inspections, RHR Heat Exchanger, and Nuclear Technical Services).  The contracted Fermi RF21 Diving Project was for desludging (cleaning), inspections, and repair of degraded coating conditions.  The torus diving project expanded in scope upon discovery conditions found by UESI diving inspectors.  This expanded scope was unplanned and jeopardized the Fermi 2 outage schedule.  As a result of the work scope change, UESI had to maintain, and add to, its initial diving team crew size and needed to manage/develop work plans to maximize work efficiency.  As a result, UESI changed the conventional day shift, night shift work schedule to develop an extended one-shift operation to rotate diving work crews “on station” to maximize work continuity.  UESI needed to convince Fermi 2 station management that this innovative approach would provide improved work efficiency and best project success & completion time.  UESI brought new divers to the site, many new to nuclear.  This placed additional responsibility on UESI supervisors and experienced personnel to train, oversee, mentor and ensure new personnel adopted UESI safety & work methods.

The Fermi UESI dive team, and project management stepped up to the task and worked diligently on an arduous work effort in a safe, productive and quality manner.  UESI was able to complete this work ahead of plant forecasts without injury or work implementation incident.

Mr. Pete Dietrich (DTE Fermi Chief Nuclear Officer) and Mr. Chad Rowe (DTE Fermi Senior Project Manager) visited the UESI Fermi office trailer to extend their appreciation for a successful and very challenging Fermi Torus diving and coating repair work project. 

Mr. Dietrich emphasized to all that despite the great hard work and commitment to safety, he asked the UESI team to finish strong with safety and high quality held paramount!  He asked and got the UESI team to repeat this message.  In addition, Mr. Dietrich gave the UESI crew a Fermi Challenge Coin for significant achievement that has a photo of the power plant on one side, and a raised image of Enrico Fermi (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enrico_Fermi) on the other side.  Etched on the edge of the coin is one of Mr. Dietrich’s favorite quotes, “What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

We were very appreciative of Mr. Dietrich to come out to our site office trailer to provide his personal recognition to the UESI team.  It was a good moment for the team and for the company!