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Uranium Is So Last Century Enter Thorium, the New Green Nuke
geni.org ^ | dec 21, 2009 | Richard Martin

Posted on 04/18/2010 12:55:27 PM PDT by Titus-Maximus

The thick hardbound volume was sitting on a shelf in a colleague’s office when Kirk Sorensen spotted it. A rookie NASA engineer at the Marshall Space Flight Center, Sorensen was researching nuclear-powered propulsion, and the book’s title — Fluid Fuel Reactors — jumped out at him. He picked it up and thumbed through it. Hours later, he was still reading, enchanted by the ideas but struggling with the arcane writing. “I took it home that night, but I didn’t understand all the nuclear terminology,” Sorensen says. He pored over it in the coming months, ultimately deciding that he held in his hands the key to the world’s energy future.

Published in 1958 under the auspices of the Atomic Energy Commission as part of its Atoms for Peace program, Fluid Fuel Reactors is a book only an engineer could love: a dense, 978-page account of research conducted at Oak Ridge National Lab, most of it under former director Alvin Weinberg. What caught Sorensen’s eye was the description of Weinberg’s experiments producing nuclear power with an element called thorium.

At the time, in 2000, Sorensen was just 25, engaged to be married and thrilled to be employed at his first serious job as a real aerospace engineer. A devout Mormon with a linebacker’s build and a marine’s crew cut, Sorensen made an unlikely iconoclast. But the book inspired him to pursue an intense study of nuclear energy over the next few years, during which he became convinced that thorium could solve the nuclear power industry’s most intractable problems. After it has been used as fuel for power plants, the element leaves behind minuscule amounts of waste. And that waste needs to be stored for only a few hundred years, not a few hundred thousand like other nuclear byproducts.

(Excerpt) Read more at geni.org ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Government
KEYWORDS: energy; nuclearpower
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Thorium - something to work on besides wasting money on wind and solar!!!!

It is cheaper than uranium, does not make U239 and plutonium (i.e. no weapons), no runaway meltdowns, and the waste lasts hundreds of years and not thousands. The reactors will be cheaper and smarter. The world would have gone with thorium if it weren't for weapons development from uranium.

China and India will pick up and run with the thorium industry while America wastes valuable time and resources on wind and solar which creates more CO2 than it prevents and is useless for a 24/7/365 economy.

Can we get back to useful productive science, rather than using junk science to make up false problems about global warming and then making up more fantasy about solving it with wind and solar! Al Gore is running a ponzi-scheme-circle-jerk and decrying Co2 in the most arrogant way possible. If people actually believed that Co2 will kill us - and we have not yet started to build nukes than somebody in charge ought to get arrested. (No one truly believes that Co2 is killing us, that's why this is a stepped down hurry, a jogging speed, not a sprint.)

1 posted on 04/18/2010 12:55:27 PM PDT by Titus-Maximus
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To: Titus-Maximus

Do you know how abundant Thorium is? Where is it primarily produced?


2 posted on 04/18/2010 1:05:04 PM PDT by spyone (ridiculum)
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To: Titus-Maximus

Truman’s Atoms for Peace project was a proliferation scam from Day 1 anyway.

And back to weapons, we need the Neutron Bomb.


3 posted on 04/18/2010 1:10:46 PM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March (Weakening McCain strengthens our borders, weakens guest worker aka amnesty)
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To: spyone

Thorium wiki page:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thorium


4 posted on 04/18/2010 1:11:14 PM PDT by Yardstick
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To: Titus-Maximus
From 41st Lunar & Planetary Science Conference (2010)

5 posted on 04/18/2010 1:14:29 PM PDT by Prospero (non est ad astra mollis e terris via)
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To: Titus-Maximus
It is cheaper than uranium, does not make U239 and plutonium (i.e. no weapons), no runaway meltdowns, and the waste lasts hundreds of years and not thousands. The reactors will be cheaper and smarter. The world would have gone with thorium if it weren't for weapons development from uranium.

Now, where did you get your Nuclear Engineering degree?

6 posted on 04/18/2010 1:18:35 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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To: spyone

while America wastes valuable time and resources on wind and solar.
While America allows these crooks to dictate and strangle America!


7 posted on 04/18/2010 1:20:06 PM PDT by ronnie raygun (The light is about to go out, do your part)
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To: Yardstick; steelyourfaith; neverdem

Worthwhile evaluating - though I am very, very skeptical of ANY energy idea supported by Harry Reid. (2008, with Hatch, was sponsoring a Thorium program....)

India a building a Th reactor, with intentions to make 5 more once the first goes on line in 2011-2012 timeframe.


8 posted on 04/18/2010 1:20:20 PM PDT by Robert A. Cook, PE (I can only donate monthly, but socialists' ABBCNNBCBS continue to lie every day!)
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To: spyone

http://www.thoriumenergy.com/ We have the largest supply, and it might be best if the US stays interested in the Moon and the space program.


9 posted on 04/18/2010 1:38:23 PM PDT by givemELL (Does Taiwan eet the Criteria to Qualify as an "Overseas Territory of the United States"? by Richar)
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To: Titus-Maximus

STP Units 3 & 4 Move Forward with EPC Agreement
Wadsworth, Texas – Feb. 25, 2009 – STP Nuclear Operating Company, Nuclear Innovation North America LLC (NINA)*, CPS Energy and Toshiba America Nuclear Energy Corp. (TANE) have signed and executed the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) agreement for proposed STP Units 3 & 4.

TANE will provide engineering and development services on a time and materials basis until the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) issues a license for Units 3 & 4. Once the federal license is granted, the EPC agreement will become lump-sum and turnkey, with performance and schedule guarantees.

“This is another significant accomplishment in making the new units a reality,” said Kevin Richards, Group Vice President, STP Units 3 & 4. “The execution of the EPC agreement concludes lengthy and detailed negotiations on virtually all aspects of the project. We continue to make substantial progress in licensing and constructing the first new nuclear reactors in the U.S. in nearly three decades.”
The agreement follows the NRC’s announcement on Feb. 11 of a review schedule for STP’s license application to build and operate the units. Based on the NRC’s schedule, the license likely will be granted in 2012.

NINA and CPS Energy each currently have a 50-percent share in the proposed plant expansion. NINA has announced that additional investors will be sought, with the expectation that NINA and CPS Energy will have 40 percent each and a new partner will have a 20 percent share. NRG Energy last week said that 15 parties have expressed interest in buying the minority share.

STP supplies approximately 7.5 percent of the electricity used in Texas. The plant is managed by the STP Nuclear Operating Company and owned by Austin Energy, CPS Energy and NRG Texas. STP’s twin reactors produce 2,700 megawatts of carbon-free energy, powering more than two million homes and businesses throughout Texas. To learn more about STP, visit www.stpnoc.com.


10 posted on 04/18/2010 1:43:02 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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To: Titus-Maximus

11 posted on 04/18/2010 1:47:34 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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To: Titus-Maximus

Plant Applications for License Renewal
Completed Applications:
(includes Application, Review Schedule, Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, and Safety Evaluation Report)

Calvert Cliffs, Units 1 and 2
Oconee Nuclear Station, Units 1, 2 and 3
Arkansas Nuclear One, Unit 1
Edwin I. Hatch Nuclear Plant, Units 1 and 2
Turkey Point Nuclear Plant, Units 3 and 4
North Anna, Units 1 and 2, and Surry, Units 1 and 2
Peach Bottom, Units 2 and 3
St. Lucie, Units 1 and 2
Fort Calhoun Station, Unit 1
McGuire, Units 1 and 2, and Catawba, Units 1 and 2
H.B. Robinson Nuclear Plant, Unit 2
R.E. Ginna Nuclear Power Plant, Unit 1
V.C. Summer Nuclear Station, Unit 1
Dresden, Units 2 and 3, and Quad Cities, Units 1 and 2
Farley, Units 1 and 2
Arkansas Nuclear One, Unit 2
D.C. Cook, Units 1 and 2
Millstone, Units 2 and 3
Point Beach, Units 1 and 2
Browns Ferry, Units 1, 2, and 3
Brunswick, Units 1 and 2
Nine Mile Point, Units 1 and 2
Monticello
Palisades
James A. FitzPatrick
Wolf Creek, Unit 1
Harris, Unit 1
Oyster Creek
Vogtle, Units 1 and 2
Three Mile Island, Unit 1
Beaver Valley, Units 1 and 2
Susquehanna, Units 1 and 2

Applications Currently Under Review:
Pilgrim 1, Unit 1 - Application received January 27, 2006
Vermont Yankee - Application received January 27, 2006
Indian Point, Units 2 and 3 - Application received April 30, 2007
Prairie Island, Units 1 and 2 - Application received April 15, 2008
Kewaunee Power Station - Application received August 14, 2008
Cooper Nuclear Station - Application received September 30, 2008
Duane Arnold Energy Center - Application received October 1, 2008
Palo Verde, Units 1, 2, and 3 - Application received December 15, 2008
Crystal River, Unit 3 - Application received December 18, 2008
Hope Creek - Application received August 18, 2009
Salem, Units 1 and 2 - Application received August 18, 2009
Diablo Canyon, Units 1 and 2 - Application received November 24, 2009
Columbia Generating Station - Application received January 20, 2010

Some links on this page are to documents in our Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS), and others are to documents in Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). ADAMS documents are provided in either PDF or Tagged Image File Format (TIFF). To obtain free viewers for displaying these formats, see our Plugins, Viewers, and Other Tools page. If you have questions about search techniques or problems with viewing or printing documents from ADAMS, please contact the Public Document Room staff.

Future Submittals of Applications:
Fiscal Year No. Renewal Application Applicant Letter of Intent
(ADAMS Accession No.) Submission Date
2010
1 Seabrook Station, Unit 1 FPL Energy Seabrook, LLC ML073381282 Apr. to June 2010
2 Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station, Unit 1 FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company ML062290261 Aug. 2010
2011 1 South Texas Project,
Unit 1 and Unit 2 STP Nuclear Operating Company ML081770299 Oct. to Dec. 2010
2 Grand Gulf Nuclear Station, Unit 1 Entergy Nuclear, Inc. ML092450109 July 2011
3 Limerick Generating Station,
Unit 1 and Unit 2 Exelon Generation Company, LLC ML091210103 Sept. 2011
2012 1 Callaway Plant, Unit 1 AmerenUE ML083370203 Oct. to Dec. 2011
2013 1 Strategic Teaming and Resource Sharing (STARS) No. 7 Un-named ML080590377 Oct. to Dec. 2012
2 Waterford Steam Electric Station, Unit 3 Entergy Nuclear, Inc. ML092450109 Jan. 2013
3 Sequoyah Nuclear Plant,
Unit 1 and Unit 2 Tennessee Valley Authority ML092220377 Apr. to June 2013
4 Strategic Teaming and Resource Sharing (STARS) No. 6 Un-named ML062550111 July to Sept. 2013
5 Un-named Exelon Generation Company, LLC ML091210103 July 2013
6 Perry Nuclear Power Plant, Unit 1 FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company ML062290261 Aug. 2013
2015 1 River Bend Station, Unit 1 Entergy Nuclear, Inc. ML092450109 Jan. 2015
2 Un-named Exelon Generation Company, LLC ML091210103 July 2015
2017 1 Un-named Exelon Generation Company, LLC ML091210103 Apr. 2017


12 posted on 04/18/2010 1:49:57 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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To: ColdWater; Titus-Maximus

Article is very very suspect.

Article states that Rickover (Father of Nuclear Power for Navy) was against thorium
FACT - Bettis Labs (which is the Navy lab that helped develop nuclear power for the Navy) - helped commercialize nuclear power (Shippingport PA reactor). Later - Bettis developed a Light water breeder reactor core for Shippingport - using seed material of Uranium and a blanket material of Thorium. So much of the initial work on the Thorium cycle was accomplished under the auspices of H.G.Rickover!

What the article fails to clarify is that Thorium can’t be used in a reactor by itself. It must be converted to U233 by breeding. After breeding - if the Thorium were to be in rods containing only Thorium (not mixed oxide with U235 and U238) - the converted U233 could be separated out from the unconverted Thorium and made into bomb material.

The article is correct in that fission products from U233, which came from Thorium has more preferential decay products than fission products from U235. But if we reprocessed our spent fuel - neither would be much of a problem.

(My Nuclear Engineering expertise comes from Navy Nuclear Power Training, and working in civilian nuclear power industry.)


13 posted on 04/18/2010 1:50:50 PM PDT by Vineyard
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To: Titus-Maximus

Great post. Thanks.


14 posted on 04/18/2010 1:52:34 PM PDT by frithguild (I gave to Joe Wilson the day after, to Scott Brown seven days before and next to JD Hayworth.)
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To: Titus-Maximus

What about Thulium and Thalium?


15 posted on 04/18/2010 1:52:37 PM PDT by x
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To: Vineyard

Your post is spot on. Additional, there were fuel fabrication and neutron economy issues. Going uranium had nothing to do with the bomb program but everything about the navy nuclear program.


16 posted on 04/18/2010 1:56:02 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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To: frithguild
I just can't seem to believe that this writer for wired.com knows more about nuclear power than the hundreds of nuclear engineers in our country ...

or these guys?

17 posted on 04/18/2010 2:03:38 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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To: x
What about Thulium and Thalium?

Not even remotely useful for energy production.

18 posted on 04/18/2010 2:06:34 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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To: Titus-Maximus
I normally lurk, but I've been following this blog for a few years and it has links about how you would build, fuel, and operate a thorium based reactor.

His latest entry talks about the history of nuclear energy policy. He shows how decisions made during and just after WW II have gotten us to where we are now.

Energy from Thorium

19 posted on 04/18/2010 2:09:03 PM PDT by between_the_lines_mn
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To: Titus-Maximus
and the waste lasts hundreds of years and not thousands.


20 posted on 04/18/2010 2:13:05 PM PDT by ColdWater ("The theory of evolution really has no bearing on what I'm trying to accomplish with FR anyway. ")
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