Dickerson Generating Station

Dickerson Generating Station
Dickerson Generating Station
Dickerson Generating Station is located in Maryland
Location of Dickerson Generating Station
Country United States
Location Dickerson, Maryland
Coordinates 39°12′36″N 77°27′54″W / 39.21°N 77.465°W / 39.21; -77.465Coordinates: 39°12′36″N 77°27′54″W / 39.21°N 77.465°W / 39.21; -77.465
Status Operational
Commission date 1959
Owner(s) GenOn (formerly Mirant)
Power station information
Primary fuel Bituminous coal, natural gas, fuel oil
Generation units 6
Turbine manufacturer(s) General Electric
Power generation information
Maximum capacity 853 MW
As of 2011

The Dickerson Generating Station is a 853 MW electric generating plant owned by GenOn (formerly Mirant Services LLC), located approximately two miles west of Dickerson, Maryland.



The facility consists of three 182 MW coal-fired steam generating plants, two 147 MW gas and oil-fired simple cycle combustion turbines, and one 13 MW black start and peaking turbine. The three coal-fired units are base-loaded and went into operation in 1959, 1960, and 1962 respectively.[1] Condenser cooling for these units is accomplished with once-through cooling water from the Potomac River at a rate of up to 400 million US gallons (1,500,000 m3) per day. Coal is delivered to the Dickerson Generating Station by CSX Transportation train. The two combustion turbines are General Electric Frame 7F gas turbines which went into operation in 1992 and 1993, and are normally fired with natural gas from a Consolidated Natural Gas company pipeline which traverses the Dickerson site.[2]

The generation plant's site property abuts the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, which follows along the Potomac River. The C&O Canal structures nearest to the plant are Lock 27 and the Monocacy Aqueduct.

Montgomery County Resource Recovery Facility

The Montgomery County Resource Recovery Facility, a 56 MW generating incineration plant which burns municipal garbage and waste, is located next to the Dickerson Generating Station. This waste-to-energy plant is also served by the CSX railroad line, which delivers trash from a central collection center in Derwood to the plant. The Montgomery County Resource Recovery Facility is operated by the Northeast Maryland Waste Disposal Authority, a state-owned corporation.[3]


The Dickerson plant began service in 1959.[4] All of the generating plants at the Dickerson Generating Station were built by the Potomac Electric Power Company, which sold them to the Southern Company in December 2000 as a result of the restructuring of the electricity generating industry in Maryland. The station was included in the spin-off from the Southern Company of Mirant in April 2001, which has since operated and maintained the plant.

In 1991, the 900-foot (270 m)-long cooling water discharge channel from the power plant, which empties into the Potomac River, became the Dickerson Whitewater Course, a canoe and kayak training facility for the 1992 Olympic Games.

The Montgomery County Resource Recovery Facility began operations in 1995.[5]


Mirant operates the coal-fired units as base load generation and the combustion turbines as peaking generation. The Dickerson Generating Station is dispatched by the PJM Interconnection regional transmission organization.[4]


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