Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) is exploring the potential for direct power sales to data centers from its nuclear plants in New Jersey, said President and CEO Ralph LaRossa during the company’s first-quarter earnings call this week.

PSEG recently notified the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) of its intent to renew the licenses for Salem Generating Station Units 1 and 2 and the Hope Creek Generating Station. PSEG owns 57% of Salem, which has a total generating capacity of 2,295 MW. PSEG owns 100% of Hope Creek, which has a capacity of 1,173 MW.

LaRossa said PSEG has had discussions about nuclear power sales related to both sides of the meter. This includes sales to mid-size data centers, each with a demand of about 50 to 100 MW.

PSEG has also received behind-the meter inquiries for co-located data centers at the nuclear plants, LaRossa said. He cited Talen Energy’s agreement to supply power from that company’s Susquehanna nuclear station to a co-located data center campus that was acquired by Amazon Web Services (AWS) earlier this year. Amazon’s cloud platform plans to expand the data center campus to up to 960 MW of power consumption.

LaRossa said PSEG stands ready to support New Jersey in its recent efforts to create an “in-state artificial intelligence hub.”

“Our New Jersey nuclear units could provide access to a highly-reliable, carbon-free source of baseload power, and infrastructure consideration is increasingly mission critical for the large data center developers and hyperscalers,” he told investors.

In the U.S. alone, data center demand is expected to reach 35 GW by 2030, up from 17 GW in 2022, McKinsey & Company projects. Grid operators and utilities are projecting significant load growth driven by electrification, new manufacturing and data center development. This is especially true load growth throughout the PJM Interconnection. PSEG operates primarily in New Jersey and parts of New York, which are within PJM territory.

Data center developers increasingly view around-the-clock nuclear power as a good match for similarly around-the-clock data center needs. PSEG said its nuclear plants achieved a 96.8% capacity factor during the first quarter of 2024.

If approved by the NRC, the licenses for Salem 1 and 2 would be extended from 2036 and 2040 to 2056 and 2060, respectively, and Hope Creek would be extended from the current 2046 expiration to 2066.

All of the nuclear units are located on one site on Artificial Island in Lower Alloways Creek Township, Salem County.

This post appeared first on Power Engineering.