230 results for author: Kirk Sorensen

50th anniversary of U-233 start of MSRE

October 8, 2018, marks the fiftieth anniversary of the operation of the Molten-Salt Reactor Experiment (MSRE) using uranium-233 as a fuel. U-233 does not occur naturally; it is formed when thorium absorbs a neutron undergoes a double beta decay to form U-233. U-233 is a superior nuclear fuel, producing enough neutrons through its fission (whether by a fast or thermal neutron) to allow sufficient conversion of thorium to U-233 to replace its consumption. That makes it very unique and very valuable. Keep reading...

SALIENT Irradiation Campaign Begins

‘Petten’ has started world’s first MSR-specific thorium fuel irradiation experiments in 45 years World’s First Thorium Molten Salt Experiment in over 45 Years

LFTR Article in Business Insider

Over the last few months I've had several interviews with Dave Mosher, and he has produced an impressive piece of history and technological reviews about the LFTR that I think is well worth reading: Business Insider: A forgotten war technology could safely power Earth for millions of years. Here's why we aren't using it "The story of how we got here is neither short nor simple, but it explains why Sorensen and others are betting big on humanity's coming "Thorium Age" — and why the US continues to stumble at its dawn."

2017 Platts Nuclear Energy Conference

I was asked to speak at the Platts Nuclear Energy Conference in Washington, DC, on February 10, as part of their panel on "New Approaches to Advanced Reactor Design." Keep reading...

Classic ORNL MSRE Film

This film was produced in 1969 by Oak Ridge National Laboratory for the United States Atomic Energy Commission to inform the public regarding the history, technology, and milestones of the Molten Salt Reactor Experiment (MSRE). Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Molten Salt Reactor Experiment was designed to assess the viability of liquid fuel reactor technologies for use in commercial power generation. It operated from January 1965 through December 1969, logging more than 13,000 hours at full power during its four-year run. The MSRE was designated a nuclear historic landmark in 1994. Thanks to Y-12 for the collection, preservation and digitization of ...

Thorium Article in Machine Design

Several years ago I had the opportunity to write an article for Machine Design magazine. Last year I was contacted again and offered another opportunity to write an article for them. They had had success with a series where questions were often asked were answered by experts. The question that they had often been asked by their readers was What's the Difference Between Thorium and Uranium Nuclear Reactors? and the article was my attempt to answer that question as simply and succinctly as possible, but no simpler that that. For those interested in the much longer answer, consider reading my MS thesis from the University of Tennessee.

Thorium Remix 2016

Gordon McDowell has completed and released his two-hour documentary "Thorium Remix 2016" and it is a fantastic introduction to the technology of thorium molten-salt reactors and the LFTR design in particular. Flibe Energy and other MSR developers are mentioned and described. Please enjoy and consider participating in Gordon's Patreon program!

Advanced Reactor Summit, January 27, 2016

Chloride Reactor Research Funded by DOE

The Department of Energy has issued two awards on January 15 under their Funding Opportunity Announcement of July 31, 2015. Energy Department Announces New Investments in Advanced Nuclear Power Reactors to Help Meet America’s Carbon Emission Reduction Goal In what took many of us by great surprise and delight, one of the announced winners was a molten-salt reactor concept. This marks the first time that the Department of Energy has committed any funding to an actual molten-salt reactor. Southern Company Services---partnering with TerraPower, Electric Power Research Institute, Vanderbilt University, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory to ...

EPRI Report on LFTR Published

For most of the past year, I have been working steadily on inputs to this report, now published by the Electric Power Research Institute. EPRI: Program on Technology Innovation: Technology Assessment of a Molten Salt Reactor Design -- The Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor (LFTR) It contains the most comprehensive description of the liquid-fluoride thorium reactor (LFTR) concept to date, along with the results of an exercise in possible effects from various failures or operational anomalies. Thanks go out to EPRI and Southern Company for providing the funding for the study, and to Teledyne Brown Engineering for the administration of the research ...