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#476 2022-02-28 17:18:34

Mars_B4_Moon
Member
Registered: 2006-03-23
Posts: 3,206

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Germany prepared to keep nuclear plants open to reduce reliance on Russian gas
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/20 … e-russian/

Could Germany keep its nuclear plants running?
https://financialpost.com/pmn/business- … ts-running

Ukraine crisis pushes Germany to rethink nuclear phase-out
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/ukra … -qh0l2qjcn

Germany Goes For Full Energy Policy Overhaul Amid Ukraine Crisis
https://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-Gene … risis.html

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#477 2022-03-16 08:00:34

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

For Calliban ... speaking of "Hit and Miss" gas engines of yesteryear ...

I must have occurred to you that your design for space propulsion would also work on Earth...

That large flywheel could be the massive generator coil assembly best known from images of hydropower stations.

The space propulsion drive you are investigating could be mounted on the opposite ends of a large beam mounted on the axle of the generator assembly. The putt-putt nature of the power system would be managed by design of the beam element to absorb the bursts of power and translate them into smooth turning of the generator shaft.

The entire assembly would be mounted in a vacuum chamber, and the "combustion" products would be evacuated into a secure facility of some kind.

My expectation is that this design for a large city power station would come online a lot sooner than the magnetic confinement fusion systems, assuming they ever come on line.

Hit-and-miss engine - Wikipedia
en.wikipedia.org › wiki › Hit-and-miss_engine
A hit-and-miss engine or Hit 'N' Miss is a type of stationary internal combustion engine that is controlled by a governor to only fire at a set speed.
Construction · Design · Usage · Replacement with throttle...

Starting an1800's Hit-and-Miss Engine - YouTube
www.youtube.com › watch

May 25, 2015 · One of the benefits of working in a salvage warehouse.....playing with cool old stuff! Anyone need ...
Duration: 4:25
Posted: May 25, 2015

I've had the opportunity to see engines like the one shown a the Coolspring Power Museum in Pennsylvania.
www.coolspringpowermuseum.org

The space drive equivalent would be much larger, but there would be a sweet spot where the costs would be less than the income earned.

(th)

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#478 2022-03-21 06:54:14

Mars_B4_Moon
Member
Registered: 2006-03-23
Posts: 3,206

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Belgium delays nuclear energy exit 10 years due to Ukraine war

https://techxplore.com/news/2022-03-bel … years.html

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#479 2022-05-13 18:12:41

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Here's something quite unusual in the present time .... a voice in favor of nuclear power ** and ** desalination of sea water!

https://www.yahoo.com/news/creative-dia … 07256.html

The gent quoted is a politician.

(th)

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#480 2022-05-13 18:38:47

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 25,943

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#481 2022-05-18 11:14:00

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

For Calliban,

Please stop stirring up kbd512 in his Prometheus topic ...

It will be all you can do to follow through on your vision of a gigantic nuclear fission hydrocarbon fuel manufacturing plant in your part of the world.

tahanson43206 wrote:

For kbd512 ....

We have a perfect setup for a competition...

You are advocating one way of making artificial fuel.

Calliban is advocating another.

Why are you reluctant to compete with Calliban, to see who can deliver artificial long chain hydrocarbons first?

You have almost ideal conditions to succeed, for all the reasons you've given over and over.

I'll try to persuade Calliban to concentrate on nuclear power in his topic.

Please concentrate on building a case for an investor to pump funds into your project.

You don't need to convince Calliban.  He's not likely to invest in your project.

Your proposal seems sound to me, but whether you (and your helpers) can set up a scenario that pays back the investment in some reasonable time is pretty much up to you.

(th)

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#482 2022-05-18 11:44:16

kbd512
Administrator
Registered: 2015-01-02
Posts: 5,842

Re: Nuclear power is safe

tahanson43206,

Calliban isn't "stirring me up".  Calliban can post whatever he likes in the Prometheus Fuels topic.  I don't take any offense to it, and agree with the idea that nuclear power would be the easiest way to achieve the desired end result, from a material consumption perspective.  If that mattered at all, then we'd be using more nuclear power, if not for this purpose then for other purposes.  The only countries expanding their use of nuclear power are China and India, because they need energy from wherever they can get it.

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#483 2022-05-18 18:47:33

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 25,943

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Its what every home should have so as to stop the grid from keeping a monopoly....

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#484 2022-06-09 17:07:33

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

For Calliban's topic... here's an update from the Military side of the house ...

https://www.yahoo.com/news/pentagon-cho … 09794.html

Defense News
Pentagon chooses design for ‘Project Pele’ portable nuclear reactor prototype

Courtney Albon
Thu, June 9, 2022, 11:22 AM
WASHINGTON — The Pentagon selected BWXT Advanced Technologies to build a prototype of a mobile nuclear reactor that will demonstrate the utility of a portable alternate energy source to support military operations in austere locations.

The U.S. Department of Defense’s Strategic Capabilities Office last year selected Lynchburg, Virginia-based BWXT and X-energy, a nuclear reactor company based in Rockville, Maryland, to design prototypes of a small, portable nuclear reactor under an effort called “Project Pele.” BWXT announced June 9 that the Pentagon chose its prototype and awarded a contract worth as much as $300 million.

Under the contract, the company will deliver its full-scale microreactor in fiscal 2024. The system will then undergo up to three years of testing at Idaho National Laboratory to validate its performance and demonstrate that the prototype can provide “reliable off-grid electric power,” BWXT said in a press release.

“We are on a mission to design, build and test new nuclear technology to protect the environment while providing power, and we are thrilled with this competitively bid award after years of hard work by our design and engineering team,” Joe Miller, BWXT president, said in a statement. “The entire nuclear industry recognizes that advanced reactors are an important step forward to support growing power needs and significant carbon reduction imperatives.”

The department does not yet have a strategy for procuring additional reactors beyond the initial Project Pele prototype. Its longer-term vision is to reduce energy spending and dependence on fuel and local power grids. The department uses some 30 terawatt hours of electricity annually and more than 10 million gallons of fuel each day and expects those levels to increase.

“A safe, transportable nuclear reactor would address this growing demand with a resilient, carbon-free energy source that would not add to the DoD’s fuel needs, while supporting mission-critical operations in remote and austere environments,” the department said in an April 13 press release.

BWXT will serve as the prime contractor and integration lead for the effort and is responsible for manufacturing the reactor module. It is also teaming with a number of companies to develop its prototype, including Northrop Grumman, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Rolls-Royce and Torch Technologies.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting.

(th)

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#485 2022-06-09 18:14:10

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Here is a rarity ... a TED talk in favor of nuclear power ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N-yALPEpV4w

(th)

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#486 2022-06-14 05:50:37

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 1,955

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Interesting proposal
https://world-nuclear-news.org/Articles … production

In my opinion, a big weakness of the Terrapower molten salt concept is the use of graphite moderator.  This wears out due to radiation damage and will need to be removed every seven years.  This will require a lengthy shutdown and refit, requiring the draining of salt, removal of shielding and replacement of the graphite, which will be significant intermediate level waste.  Other molten salt reactors have been based on epithermal spectrum without moderator.  These canbachieve very high power density.  However, they are less suitable for small modular designs because fission and absorption cross-sections decline with increasing neutron energy.  So a larger core diameter is neccesary.


"Plan and prepare for every possibility, and you will never act. It is nobler to have courage as we stumble into half the things we fear than to analyse every possible obstacle and begin nothing. Great things are achieved by embracing great dangers."

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#487 2022-06-26 10:13:24

Mars_B4_Moon
Member
Registered: 2006-03-23
Posts: 3,206

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Dutch Cabinet will reveal plans for 2 new nuclear power plants this week

https://nltimes.nl/2022/06/26/cabinet-w … tions-week

France Sees Nuclear Energy Output Plummet At The Worst Possible Moment.

https://oilprice.com/Alternative-Energy … oment.html

A recent flurry of unexpected issues at the Électricité de France (EDF), the state nuclear power operator representing the largest nuclear fleet in Europe, has caused French nuclear energy output to tumble to its lowest levels in 30 years. Around half of the EDF’s massive nuclear fleet has been taken offline, delivering a massive blow to the EU’s energy independence and security in the midst of a worldwide energy crisis.

Last edited by Mars_B4_Moon (2022-06-26 10:23:18)

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#488 2022-06-26 10:47:16

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 1,955

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Light water reactors are constructed from a mixture of low alloy carbon steels, stainless steels and nickel alloys.  If the materials are not of good quality and contain contaminants, then grain boundary precipitation of contaminants under intense gamma fields can cause cracking.  In a PWR, if the pH and oxygen levels are not carefully controlled, then transition welds in the steam generators and pressuriser can take heavy corrosion over time.  In BWRs, core shrouds tend to suffer corrosion that neccesitates replacement before the end of design life.  Both issues are expensive to correct, often requiring replacement of heavy components and long downtimes.

In the US and UK, there are industry wide learning and development protocols, that have gradually developed better materials and a better undedstanding of chemistry control over a period of decades.  Building and operating nuclear reactors cannot be an amateur operation.  Cutting corners on materials control and coolant chemistry control will knock decades off of the operational life of a nuclear reactor.  In my opinion, this is where Chinese reactors are most likely to face problems.  They are building a lot of units very rapidly.  Experience tells us that whilst the Chinese are good at ramping up production very quickly, they often cut corners when it comes to quality control.  If they are cutting corners with quality control of primary circuit materials, then expect massive problems when those reactors start reaching middle age.  Problems like those the French are having right now.

Last edited by Calliban (2022-06-26 10:53:13)


"Plan and prepare for every possibility, and you will never act. It is nobler to have courage as we stumble into half the things we fear than to analyse every possible obstacle and begin nothing. Great things are achieved by embracing great dangers."

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#489 2022-06-29 22:50:02

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 25,943

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#490 2022-07-08 07:14:26

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

This post is for Calliban re topic, and a salute to SpaceNut for post #489

Calliban posted most recently in the shipping topic, and it occurred to me (because I associate Calliban with all topics nuclear) that I have definitely been noticing hints of changing attitudes toward nuclear power in the States.  Germany has a way to go, and (as I think about it) they may be betting heavily on fusion for the long term.

Aside from Germany, I've noticed little hints here and there in recent days, that a few politicians are starting to see some signs of understanding of the upside potential of nuclear power for their constituents.

In particular, I am pretty sure I heard a quote of a politician from either Virginia or (more likely) West Virginia, suggesting openness to nuclear fission as an energy solution that would work for the state.

If anyone can find that quote, or similar ones, please post them here in Calliban's topic. This is as good a topic as any for the purpose.

(th)

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#491 2022-07-13 17:44:35

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

This post is for Calliban ....

I'm hoping you have a bit of time to spare ... I'm not sure how much is needed ....

My request is to sketch a nuclear fission plant that could support Big Ship operations, using chemical power.

GW Johnson is preparing multiple presentations for the upcoming 25th anniversary Mars Society conference.

The presentations vary in style and impact, from the very basic history lesson of how settlements on Earth have occurred in recent centuries, to the forward looking Space Tug presentation, that shows what ** could ** be done, if humans had the will.

Nothing (or almost nothing) that Dr. Johnson describes is vaporware or speculative, although some of the nuclear fission propulsion ideas are stalled at an early development stage.

However, the chemical propulsion scenario for Big Ship requires such massive amounts of propellant (fuel and oxidizer) that the numbers look unachievable with present technology or economic circumstances.

However, every ton of the thousands of tons needed could be manufactured by a nuclear fission power production facility of sufficient size and capability.

Here is a link to the slides for the Big Ship presentation:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/h9y36wo05x8hu … s.pdf?dl=0

The number that jumps out at me is the estimate of 2 million metric tons of propellant for a round trip flight to Mars, with no refueling at Mars.  The estimate is accompanied by an estimate of (about) 40,000 metric tons to to be manufactured on Earth each month, assuming 52 months between flights.

It would be ambitious to design a nuclear plant able to deliver 40,000 m.tons per month.

The efficiency of the conversion of CO2 and water into fuel and oxidizer is probably knowable. 

Some energy is needed to liquefy the fuel and oxidizer, and to keep it cold for (52 months or less).

The topic devoted to "Beyond Oil and Gas" is a good place for those figures to be stored.

(th)

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#492 2022-07-24 19:21:09

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 25,943

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#493 2022-07-26 04:30:52

Mars_B4_Moon
Member
Registered: 2006-03-23
Posts: 3,206

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Clean Core Thorium Energy and US Department of Energy Sign Strategic Partnership Agreement

https://nz.news.yahoo.com/clean-core-th … 00477.html

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#494 2022-07-31 08:09:25

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 10,760

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Here is good news for small reactor supporters ...

https://arstechnica.com/science/2022/07 … or-design/

US regulators will certify first small nuclear reactor design
NuScale will get the final approval nearly six years after starting the process.
JOHN TIMMER - 7/29/2022, 6:20 PM

NuScale's reactor-in-a-can.
Enlarge / NuScale's reactor-in-a-can.
NuScale
437
WITH 159 POSTERS PARTICIPATING, INCLUDING STORY AUTHOR

On Friday, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) announced that it would be issuing a certification to a new nuclear reactor design, making it just the seventh that has been approved for use in the US. But in some ways, it's a first: the design, from a company called NuScale, is a small modular reactor that can be constructed at a central facility and then moved to the site where it will be operated.

The move was expected after the design received an okay during its final safety evaluation in 2020.

Small modular reactors have been promoted as avoiding many of the problems that have made large nuclear plants exceedingly expensive to build. They're small enough that they can be assembled on a factory floor and then shipped to the site where they will operate, eliminating many of the challenges of custom, on-site construction. In addition, they're structured in a way to allow passive safety, where no operator actions are necessary to shut the reactor down if problems occur.

Many of the small modular designs involve different technology from traditional reactors, such as the use of molten uranium salts as the reactor fuel. NuScale has a much more traditional design, with fuel and control rods and energy transported through boiling water. Its operator-free safety features include setting the entire reactor in a large pool of water, control rods that are inserted into the reactor by gravity in the case of a power cut, and convection-driven cooling from an external water source.

Advertisement

NuScale started the certification process in 2016. According to the NRC, that process required the company to submit technical information that allows the Commission to evaluate it as follows:

Applications must closely analyze the design's appropriate response to accidents or natural events. Applications must also lay out the inspections, tests, analyses and acceptance criteria that will verify the construction of key design features. In addition, the NRC also requires design certification applicants to assess how the designs protect the reactor and spent fuel pool from the effects of a large commercial aircraft impact.

Once complete, the certification is published in the Federal Register, allowing the design to be used in the US. Friday's announcement says that the NRC is all set to take the publication step.

The NRC will still have to weigh in on the sites where any of these reactors are deployed. Currently, one such site is in the works: a project called the Carbon Free Power Project, which will be situated at Idaho National Lab. That's expected to be operational in 2030 but has been facing some financial uncertainty. Utilities that might use the power produced there have grown hesitant to commit money to the project.

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#495 2022-07-31 09:27:31

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 25,943

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Here is the only issue for a draught area for the use "convection-driven cooling from an external water source."

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#496 2022-07-31 11:08:43

NewMarsMember
Member
Registered: 2019-02-17
Posts: 587

Re: Nuclear power is safe

For SpaceNut re #495

Thanks for pointing out that detail.

Sea water is perfectly capable of providing reactor cooling.  In fact, I understand that nuclear plant built near the ocean are there for precisely that reason. however, the same principle could apply inland, if the plant designers decided to import sea water for a cooling pond adjacent to their facility.

The water will evaporate when it is dropped down a cooling tower, so some will be needed on a maintenance schedule to replenish the supply.

However, the evaporated water would (hopefully) land down wind before leaving the country, so ** someone ** would benefit.

In addition, with a bit of thought, the mist rising above the cooling tower might be captured without inhibiting the flow, in which case fresh water would be available for local use.

(th)


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#497 2022-08-02 03:02:14

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 1,955

Re: Nuclear power is safe

Zubrin discusses the need and opportunity for nuclear power, on Earth and in space.  Mars colonisation will be impossible without it, because a Mars colonist will need 10x more energy per capita than an Earther, on a planet with less than half the solar constant.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CMfdtyTpPhU

Zubrin is without a doubt, one of the cleverest men alive today.  He pretty much set the scene for Elon Musk's Mars colonisation effort.  But his presentation skills are not good.  He would have done better having known the questions before hand and talking through a prepared presentation.  None the less, this is an interesting interview, if you can sit through it.

Last edited by Calliban (2022-08-02 03:04:45)


"Plan and prepare for every possibility, and you will never act. It is nobler to have courage as we stumble into half the things we fear than to analyse every possible obstacle and begin nothing. Great things are achieved by embracing great dangers."

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