The Mythology of the Thorium Car, Thorium Plasma Batteries, and More!

Thorium-Concept-Car

From time to time there appear in the public domain stories and advertisements about revolutionary consumer products and their technical underpinnings.  These communications make outlandish, but very exciting, claims.  Many of these involve promises of huge dollar savings to the consumer.  These opportunistic authors use the interesting technique of attaching their literally incredible claims to credible science.  The incredible is pulled along by the coattails of the credible.  If such stories and theories are not addressed by rational scientific analysis, the incredible can taint what has been a very credible message about a very credible technology.

Recently, stories have appeared touting the feasibility of the Thorium Powered Car, and about the existence and utility of “Thorium Plasma batteries.”  The information in these stories is false.

While the Thorium powered Cadillac car is wickedly cool looking, and although Thorium technology has a bright future for production of electricity and other benefits as set forth elsewhere on this Energy From Thorium website, Thorium energy technology cannot be used as an individual unit to power a car, for a multitude of reasons.

The Energy From Thorium Foundation does not, in even the remotest sense, support the basis of these alleged automobile power technologies.

The concept of a thorium powered car has many, many, problems.

Here is a very good video that thoroughly examines the problems with the thorium car. (Warning adult language used)

The Thorium powered Cadillac concept car is not even the first nuclear powered concept car by a big three auto manufacturer.

Thorium Plasma Batteries proponents have violated the scientific method at every turn.  Researchers, and even journalists, usually do a “review of the literature” before embarking on new research, or writing a news piece.  In the case of a notional Thorium Plasma Battery, a review of the literature is a very difficult task, because no plans can be found for these batteries.     The information used in these proponent articles consists merely of  interrelated links among scientifically valueless websites.  See,

Researchers, readers, and other interested parties cannot even ask the people who allegedly designed and/or built such batteries in the first place, because they are all dead.  I can find no credible websites discussing this supposed technology, and many people are being duped into believing the Thorium Plasma Battery exists, that its technology is actually real.  In clear violation of the scientific method, none of the assertions made by the proponents can be duplicated or verified.

The concept of a Thorium Plasma battery is not new.  It is a  spinoff of 1990’s stories of the water powered car and of the 100 mpg carburetor. I know something about this hoax because it originated in Ohio, the home of the Energy From Thorium Foundation.  It was concocted by anti-capitalist-leaning groups with the apparent purpose of influencing Americans against free market capitalism. The stories and ads demonized big business, blaming the auto manufacturers and the petroleum companies for “hiding” technology which would allegedly hurt their businesses.  A review of the above websites demonstrates that their authors believe the same concerning “suppression” of a supposedly viable Thorium powered car and Thorium Plasma battery technology: it would harm the petroleum industry, so it was bought up by the industry and then hidden.

A lesson to be learned: We should not be so eager to believe everything we see on the internet.

Stanley Meyer of Columbus, Ohio and his water fuel cell were proved to be fraudulent http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanley_Meyer’s_water_fuel_cell.  Mr. Meyer died in 1998.

And of course we all hope that Mario is still alive! (Caution: Very Funny!)

 

 

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21 Replies to "The Mythology of the Thorium Car, Thorium Plasma Batteries, and More!"

  • Paul Cubbage
    June 22, 2014 (11:06 pm)
    Reply

    A thorium engine is yet another atomic steam engine. It heats water with a laser. One claim is that a thorium (steam) engine the size of an air conditioner could power a small town. That amount of power in that space would be hotter than the interior of the sun.AKA fusion!

  • Harrison
    July 6, 2014 (6:35 pm)
    Reply

    See this car that runs straight on water with out anything else, just water! http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CrxfMz2eDME

  • Stephen H
    July 28, 2014 (4:01 pm)
    Reply

    This was an excellent analysis. But in terms of nuclear safety, you should read the following:
    The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station Disaster
    Normal Accidents, by Perrow
    Failure to Learn: The BP Texas City Refinery Disaster by Andrew Hopkins
    Beyond Normal Accidents and High Reliability Organizations: The Need for an Alternative Approach to Safety in Complex Systems (paper)
    Anything detailed about the Davis-Besse and Brown's ferry near misses.

    If you do, you will realize that the nuclear accidents that have occurred were actually all close calls, and by blind luck, were not as bad as they could have been rather than opportunities for optimism regarding nuclear safety. As our plants age, their maintenance costs will increase, causing their operators to skimp on safety, resulting in more frequent accidents. The problem is trying to operate nuclear power plants with constant or increasing profit, rather than what's necessary (Production vs. Safety culture). A peer-reviewed paper I read calculated that if the world used nuclear power to generate most of its electricity, based on the current safety data, there would be a Chernobyl-scale nuclear accident somewhere in the world each month. This is not a record to be proud of.

    • Lexis
      August 1, 2014 (4:13 pm)
      Reply

      Do a little more research and you will see that Thorium is much more controllable and safer than the isotopes currently being used.

  • Mașina care nu are nevoie de alimentare | Republika Verde
    August 20, 2014 (9:55 am)
    Reply

    […] Stevens înţelege că oamenii pot fi sceptici în privinţa Thoriului, fiindcă acesta este radioactiv, însă grijile în acest sens sunt nefondate, crede el. „Radiaţiile produse de un astfel de mecanism pot fi oprite cu o folie de aluminiu”, spune Stevens. „Chiar şi radiografiile dentare produc mai multe radiaţii decât această tehnologie”. (Sursă: earthweareone.com) […]

  • fireball55
    September 25, 2014 (4:53 pm)
    Reply

    Of Corse it will be down played can you imagine if all that was said about thorium were true the MULTIBILLIOM DOLLAR OIL CORPS. would be in heart attack mode. All they could see in the future is there profits going up in smoke, PUN intended. No more 40 billion dollar corp. wellfare checks out of tax payers pockets every year. These greedy S.O.B.'s would do or say anything to cloud the issue even paying some prominent scientist to denounce it .

  • C STEPHENS
    October 12, 2014 (10:59 pm)
    Reply

    If it was not for the US government we would have thorium power plants right now but Uranium is the best way to make bombs, so now we have Uranium based reactors. In the 1970s Hyman George Rickover (January 27, 1900 – July 8, 1986) was a United States Navy admiral who directed the original development of naval nuclear propulsion, Could have switched to Thorium reactors is subs but was in the POCKET of the Uranium Lobby!! In 'Oct 2, 2008 – Oct 2, 2008. S. 3680 (110th). A bill to amend the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 to provide for thorium fuel cycle nuclear power generation. "FAILED" why again the URANIUM lobby and General Electric KILLED IT>!!! Now the India and the Chinese are developing Thorium technology!!!
    SO IF LFTR TECHNOLOGY IS SO GRATE WHY AREN'T THERE ANY IN THE US….

    • Jim Kress
      October 24, 2014 (9:00 pm)
      Reply

      Thorium-fuelled Molten Salt Reactors (MSRs) offer a potentially safer, more efficient and sustainable form of nuclear power. Pioneered in the US at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in the 1960s and 1970s, MSRs benefit from novel safety and operational features such as passive temperature regulation, low operating pressure and high thermal to electrical conversion efficiency. Some MSR designs, such as the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor (LFTR), provide continuous online fuel reprocessing, enabling very high levels of fuel burn-up. Although MSRs can be fuelled by any fissile material, the use of abundant thorium as fuel enables breeding in the thermal spectrum, and produces only tiny quantities of plutonium and other long-lived actinides.

      Current international research and development efforts are led by China, where a $350 million MSR programme has recently been launched, with a 2MW test MSR scheduled for completion by around 2020. Smaller MSR research programmes are ongoing in France, Russia and the Czech Republic. The MSR programme at ORNL concluded that there were no insurmountable technical barriers to the development of MSRs. Current research and development priorities include integrated demonstration of online fuel reprocessing, verification of structural materials and development of closed cycle gas turbines for power conversion.
      http://www.the-weinberg-foundation.org/wp-content

      • Hon.Peter LEWIS
        February 15, 2015 (12:23 pm)
        Reply

        Jim, My intelligence confirms that you have reported largely, the facts. Nothing technical is incorrect. I am told that the Chinese have also been deliberating looking out for and buying up supplies of various concentrates (containing viable grades of Thorium) and requiring further value adding refinement. They are stock-piling the Thorium-rich monazites and other residual parts of the tailings from these rare earths and minerals sands containing the viable grades of Thorium: whilst all other components of these tailings from the refining of such concentrates are being dumped using least-cost methods of disposal i.e. as washed sand & gravel & fill for various purposes. Sceptics must surely support a view that the Chinese Government is ill-informed and stupid OR concede that their own (sceptical) views about the future of Thorium as a long-term safe source of clean energy are at odds with the facts and based on their emotive disposition about our need to find a means of stopping the addition of further carbon to the atmosphere (by finding a source of producing synthetic coal and hydrocarbons from the existing CO2 in the atmosphere and extracting the excess carbon (they emphatically claim) has been, therefore still is AND will continue to cause climate change, unless it is extracted and made into in a stable form; then sequestered (i.e. interred permanently) in the earth's crust.

    • Jack W.
      November 12, 2014 (4:17 am)
      Reply

      Same reasons we don't have decent public transportation systems, failing infrastructure, foolproof voting, and etc. But we have lots of ignorance translating to lack of imagination, as well as a wild surplus of religion, and etc.

  • carl anderson
    November 24, 2014 (8:30 pm)
    Reply

    The nuclear fuel that powers star ship Enterprise is thorium or some thing spelled a S . the solid state control of plasma is trilithium . fiction or real black board theories or all made up ? The fuel is for matter anti matter mixing and BOOM . NOW THE CAR , no claims made that said it really works only black board theory and designing and building the hardware to find out HOW ? The car seen like the Ford car are scale models . look at the photos and back grounds , shadows in background but no shadows on car . A model on a table with photograph in back ground .

  • Dan
    November 30, 2014 (7:21 am)
    Reply

    It boggles the mind reading some of these comments especially those peppered with course language. Understanding and applying a little basic chemistry and thermodynamics will reveal the impossibility of the water powered vehicle and 100mpg carburetor as fiction. .

  • torrents
    December 2, 2014 (10:49 am)
    Reply

    The concept of a Thorium Plasma battery is not new. It is a spinoff of 1990’s stories of the water powered car and of the 100 mpg carburetor.

  • Mortech
    December 26, 2014 (2:18 am)
    Reply

    Beyond Normal Accidents and High Reliability Organizations: The Need for an Alternative Approach to Safety in Complex Systems (paper)

  • brian doherty
    January 1, 2015 (6:12 am)
    Reply

    I experimented on a hydrogen plant in my car and the best I could achieve was about 2litres a 100klm saving .Not worth the effort and risking water condensing into your engine and exhaust pipe . As a plumber lacking knowledge on the subject it makes me wonder why someone working in this field could not do better . I think the best and cheapest way to go is compressed air cars no expensive batteries only air . Skoda are releasing one soon and there is an engine on the Webb . engineair's ultra efficiency rotary compressed air motor . Which has been out for the past 10 years yet no manufacturers are showing any interest . Regards Brian

  • MJ39
    January 22, 2015 (10:10 am)
    Reply

    People remember one thing, regardless how viable any new technology or ideas may be, until we get rid of the influence of the oil corporations, nothing new will ever be developed. We have to get the oil lobby groups out of our countries capitals, we have to get politicians who will not cave in to the oil companies. We need legislation that will allow the mass production of these new technologies, once they do come forward. There are going to be technologies out there, viable ones, but before we can move forward with them, we have to remove these roadblocks and assholes like Stephen harper who is so deep into the pockets of the oil companies, no other technologies will ever survive regardless how viable it may be. But regardless what any of you may think of these new technologies and how negative nay sayers may be, some of these technologies are viable, they just need governmental support for further development. But as it stands right now, that is never going to happen.

  • Daily star signs
    January 28, 2015 (1:47 pm)
    Reply

    Do a little more research and you will see that Thorium is much more controllable and safer than the isotopes currently being used.

  • Ariadne
    March 16, 2015 (10:07 am)
    Reply

    Thanks


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