How much electricity does a typical nuclear power plant generate?

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Nuclear reactors and cooling towers at the Susquehanna Steam Electric Station south of Shickshinny, Pennsylvania. Image Credit: Nuclear Regulatory Commission
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"As of December 1, 2017, there were 99 operating nuclear reactors at 61 nuclear power plants in the United States. The R. E. Ginna Nuclear Power Plant in New York is the smallest nuclear power plant in the United States, and it has one reactor with an electricity generating capacity1 of 582 megawatts (MW). The Palo Verde nuclear power plant in Arizona is the largest nuclear power plant in the United states with three reactors and a total electricity generating capacity1 of about 3,937 MW..

The amount of electricity that a power plant generates over a period of time depends on the amount of time it operates at a specific capacity. For example, if the R. E. Ginna reactor operates at 582 MW capacity for 24 hours, it will generate 13,968 megawatthours (MWh). Most power plants do not operate at full capacity every hour of every day of the year. However, nuclear power reactors generally operate at or near their rated generating capacity throughout the year and have relatively high annual capacity factors."

1Net Summer capacity

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