Watts Bar Unit 2 Issued Operating License

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has granted the operating license for Watts Bar Nuclear Plant Unit 2.

The Commission issued the license Oct. 22, clearing the way for initial fuel load followed by further testing and inspections to put the nation’s first new nuclear unit of the 21st century in service.

Receipt of the operating license marks the end of construction on Watts Bar Unit 2. The Watts Bar team will now focus on preparing for initial fuel load and readying all the key components and systems for operation. The unit is on schedule for operation in 2016.


This achievement signifies more than a stage in construction for TVA. It demonstrates that TVA has taken every step possible to deliver low-cost, carbon-free electricity safely and with the highest quality.

Watts Bar Unit 2 is essential to diversifying TVA’s power sources to ensure that the more than 9 million people served by TVA and their local power companies have affordable and reliable electricity generated in an environmentally friendly manner

Completing Watts Bar Unit 2 and successfully licensing one of the nation’s largest new nuclear generation projects is a historic milestone for TVA and the nuclear industry. With the delivery of this unit, TVA is further positioning nuclear power as a key player in TVA’s – and the nation’s – energy portfolio and instilling confidence in TVA and the nuclear industry.

Together, Unit 2 and Watts Bar’s already operating Unit 1, will produce nearly 2,300 megawatts of carbon-free energy. That’s enough to power 1.3 million homes in the TVA service territory.

Read more about the construction and history of Watts Bar Unit 2 on our comprehensive timeline

Want more detail? Get the vital statistics on Watts Bar Unit 2.

Get the bigger picture on our Watts Bar Nuclear Plant page.

  • Timeline
  • Vital Statistics

Watts Bar Unit 2 License A Critical Success

In one of the most critical steps on its path to commercial operations, Watts Bar Unit 2 has received an operating license from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.