Sherco 3 Power Plant Outage

Sherco 3 Power Plant Outage

November 23, 2010

On Saturday, November 19, during post-overhaul testing of the Unit 3 turbine at the Sherburne County Generating plant, located near Becker, Mn., a failure occurred within the unit’s steam turbine and generator.  The failure resulted in a fire on the turbine and generator. Local fire departments were summoned and the fires were extinguished. No serious personnel injuries occurred, and all safety and fire protection systems operated as designed. The extent of damage is unknown at this time and after a cleanup is completed, an investigation will begin to determine the cause and the level of damage to the unit, the cost to repair the damage, and how long the unit will be out of service. Unit 3 is owned jointly by Xcel Energy and Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency (SMMPA) and is operated by Xcel Energy. Unit 3 is the largest of 3 units at the plant, generates 900 megawatts of electricity and accounts for 85% of the energy production on the SMMPA system.