Constellation N.Y. Nine Mile 1 reactor back at full power

NEW YORK, Feb 26 (Reuters) - Constellation Energy Group Inc's CEG.N 621-megawatt Unit 1 at the Nine Mile Point nuclear power station in New York returned to full power by early Thursday, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said in a report.

The company reduced the unit to about 45 percent of capacity by early Wednesday to fix a condenser leak.

The 1,756 MW Nine Mile Point station is located in Scriba in Oswego County, about 90 miles east of Rochester, New York. There are two units at the station, Unit 1 and 1,135 MW Unit 2, which entered service in 1969 and 1988, respectively.

Unit 2 continued to operate at full power.

One MW powers about 800 homes in New York.

In 2006, the NRC renewed the plant’s original 40-year operating licenses for both units for another 20 years until 2029 and 2046.

In October, UniStar Nuclear Energy LLC, a venture between Constellation and France's Electricite de France SA (EDF) EDF.PA, filed with the NRC for permission to build one of Areva SA's CEPFi.PA 1,600 MW U.S. Evolutionary Power Reactors (EPR) at the site.

Using an industry estimate of $4,000 per kilowatt, the new reactor would cost about $6.4 billion. Other nuclear operators considering the EPR have estimated the total cost as high as $10 billion.

Constellation, which owns all of Unit 1, operates the station for its owners. Constellation (82 percent) and Long Island Power Authority (18 percent) own Unit 2.

Constellation, of Baltimore, owns and operates about 9,000 MW of generating capacity, markets energy commodities in North America, and transmits and distributes electricity to 1.2 million customers and natural gas to 630,000 customers in Maryland. (Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by John Picinich)