New Luminant plant going offline for repair

Luminant will shut down its Sandow 5 power plant Friday to install steel plates throughout the 581-megawatt structure in an attempt to reduce vibration and noise.

The project is expected to last at least two weeks and is termed "significant planned maintenance."

Noise in an area east of the plant, located in the complex at Alcoa's Rockdale Operations, since Sandow 5 began its testing and tuning phase.

The noise is audible over an area east of Sandow, including Country Club Estates and several county roads branching off US 77.

Luminant acknowledged it had met with many area residents who expressed concern over the noise.

Some have maintained vibrations are strong enough to shake walls and make water jiggle in a glass.

Laura Starnes, Luminant spokesperson, said Sandow 5 is still in the final stages of tuning and testing and is now produc- ing electricity that is sold on the statewide grid.

"As the unit moves toward full operations, additional environmental testing is in progress," she said.

"Sandow 5 features a circulating, fluidized bed boiler and advanced, yet mature, technology in operation for many years," she said.

"Plant leaders have consistently met with neighbors and thoroughly and openly explained the process to make repairs," Starnes said.

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