Energy From Thorium Discussion Forum

It is currently Dec 16, 2017 7:13 pm

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 145 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Author Message
PostPosted: Dec 03, 2017 2:50 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Dec 22, 2015 8:40 pm
Posts: 356
Location: Florida
Kirk Sorensen wrote:
http://www.thestate.com/news/politics-government/article187596398.html
The lineman's POV is sobering, and the V.C. Summer debacle is discouraging for nuclear power. Where is the analysis of the big picture?

_________________
"Those who say it can’t be done are usually interrupted by others doing it."

—James Arthur Baldwin, American novelist, essayist, playwright, poet, and social critic


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 05, 2017 9:15 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Nov 30, 2006 3:30 pm
Posts: 3355
Location: Alabama
Toshiba to Speed $1.5 Billion Payment to Southern on Nuke Plant

Quote:
Southern Co. said an accelerated timetable for receiving the remaining $3.2 billion in parental guarantees from Toshiba Corp. for two reactors under construction in Georgia will help its case to continue with the project. Southern’s Georgia Power unit, which owns a 46 percent stake in the Vogtle plant, will get about $1.47 billion of the total. The project owners, which include Oglethorpe Power Corp., Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia and Dalton Utilities, have received $455 million so far from Toshiba. Southern said Toshiba will provide the remaining payments by Dec. 15, according to a statement Tuesday by the Atlanta-based company. Under a earlier agreement, Toshiba would have spread out the payments through 2020 after its Westinghouse Electric Co. unit backed out of the project after filing for bankruptcy in March.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 06, 2017 12:06 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Dec 22, 2015 8:40 pm
Posts: 356
Location: Florida
Thanks for the link, Kirk. I got the e-mail alert. I have a few minutes, if I may.

Kind of good news? "[T]otal costs have soared to more than $25 billion." So, out-the-door $12.5 billion per AP1000 NPP? But those will be running for decades proving the AP1000 safety features.

Here in the world of advanced nuclear energy generation technologies at "Energy from Thorium", it has long been known (2006) that MSRs are the better way to get at fission power compared to the U.S. Naval marine nuclear propulsion design—but built on land near bodies of water—like the Navy. Over a decade later, costs at the level of first-mover advanced nuclear RD&D funding are sought for another copy of the water-cooled design when molten salts were known to work better and are the obvious choice for land—aside from the negative consequences of the Cold War.

I feel there is no substantive public discussion of the one problem that has highest priority for a solution to most human problems: energy tech. Get energy right—noncarbon at up to three million times more powerful pound for pound together with a number of other material benefits—and human prosperity can be operated without spoiling our home planet—at least in principle for the sake of bi-partisan support. Get all that energy going well first, and everything else follows. I don't get it. I was born a dreamer. It's no real crime but known foolishness.

From my introductory understanding, an ideal thorium burner would be best as a processing plant where a decay tank specifically for the full optimum protactinium capture requires a constant on-site inventory of a highly-enriched uranium 233 stream under fission in the MSR core. Dr. Lyons has already testified that U-233 is source material and cannot be allowed in the NPP markets [ref?] else we would increase the risk of mass-murdering terrorists gaining access to nuclear bomb-making material—if I got that right.

If the U.S. Congress passed a national nuclear innovation act and one our President would sign, it could change the nuclear laws to allow for commercial U-233 inventories for power generation—probably with new security technologies yet to be invented. The Act could then free our domestic thorium resources for domestic tranquility—a state that requires an immense amount of energy. I believe this was a vision of the original colonists that figured out a way to build a new nation back in the "age of enlightenment" minus the actual engineering plans.

Our broken domestic law on our thorium and REE resources is holding up a huge amount of potential national material upgrades in a host of vitally important domestic economic areas. Heck, with abundant NP, all carbon operations can be transformed in ways that effectively turn our carbon resource utilization into an ecological balance within the geologic carbon cycle—especially given the benefits of advanced planetary monitoring from space—the information businesses. Nuclear is millions of times more powerful pound for pound. NP make-up power can transform many vital chemical processing industries cradle to grave—like an aspect of planetary terraforming but at home. That's how big human energy systems are. What issue has higher priority?

And plastic evidently is building up in earth oceans with unknown consequences for the future of the web of life [CBS report 12-05-2017], it would be prudent to build these major power machines and shunt a large amount of energy into oceanic restoration projects to remove the plastic waste. Only the immense energy density of the nucleus has this ability—fission will continue even after plasma (ITER) goes online.

The Flibe Energy Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor or FE-LFTR-23—as I an average citizen understand it—cannot be allowed until the U.S. and the world changes it's laws on source material. Standard NPP water reactors operate at low enrichment levels that is a barrier to nefarious bomb makers. But the thorium MSR breeder (FE-LFTR-23) is a NPP design that eliminates the enrichment process and thus would lower a barrier to mass murder. Of course, average citizens then have to know a host of technical details. If I can, the natural thallium decay product that is a source of intense gamma radiation likely to technically thwart bomb makers enough to remove any incentives to go to all the trouble to build their hidden reactor? Does the world degrade into oblivion because a few mass murderers threaten mass death by any and all means?

I bet if the economies were flowing better with improved energy systems and prosperity were becoming widespread, incentives to destroy the very technologies that enable such great benefits would dwindle away, and terrorist recruiting would evaporate. Another great reason to get energy tech right—and now. Today.

Okay. Thanks, Kirk.

_________________
"Those who say it can’t be done are usually interrupted by others doing it."

—James Arthur Baldwin, American novelist, essayist, playwright, poet, and social critic


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 12, 2017 11:06 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Nov 30, 2006 3:30 pm
Posts: 3355
Location: Alabama
Confidential Westinghouse report details early faults with nuclear projects

Quote:
A Westinghouse engineer drafted the report in 2011. He predicted massive budget overruns and significant problems with the nuclear projects' construction designs. But the analysis was reportedly ignored by Westinghouse's senior leadership, according to a former Westinghouse employee in Pittsburgh.


So basically....they knew.

Santee Cooper will slash $1 billion and won't fill some jobs after failed nuclear project

Quote:
Santee Cooper is slashing next year's operating budget by more than $1 billion, saying it needs to conserve cash, pay off debt and hold down electricity bills after its failed effort to expand the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station. The board of the state-owned utility approved the $2.1 billion spending plan at a meeting Monday in Pinopolis. The projected budget is down almost 35 percent compared to 2017, and Santee Cooper is not raising rates. Most of the spending cuts come from halting construction at the V.C. Summer project in Fairfield County. But the utility is also planning to slim its overhead to avoid raising rates while hundreds of millions in borrowing comes due.


Ramifications across the board...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 13, 2017 11:02 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Nov 30, 2006 3:30 pm
Posts: 3355
Location: Alabama
U.S. court removes creditor hurdle to a Westinghouse bankruptcy plan


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 15, 2017 8:46 am 
Offline

Joined: Apr 19, 2008 1:06 am
Posts: 2240
Chinese are the leading energy users now. I think they owe themselves and the world the development of a safe and compact fast MSR.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 15, 2017 9:23 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Dec 22, 2015 8:40 pm
Posts: 356
Location: Florida
jagdish wrote:
. . . the development of a safe and compact fast MSR.
Interesting. The Westinghouse bankruptcy and Toshiba backing away from sold-phase water-cooled low-enriched power technology speaks volumes for this way of doing fission.

Unfortunate that the people in power are lost in the minutia so much they evidently are unable to see the way forward with fission power. I am biased in favor of the online salt chemical processing with thermal neutrons that is ideal for thorium—and Flibe Energy's plan to have a tandem MSR operation where one MSR uses plutonium to breed U-233 from thorium that is introduced into the twin MSR but specially optimized for pure thorium/U-233 in the thermal. This last requires near 100% enriched U-233 (protactinium decay tank stream) that can—at insane level of difficulty—be fashioned into high-gamma-emitting fission bombs—that no nuclear power in history has chosen for use in nuclear weapons—and no wannabe nuclear armed group would ever even want it for its worthlessness in nuclear war.

Fast MSR evidently is the goal of TerraPower and others—larger more intense core operations because of the larger fission inventories required, as I understand it. The faster the neutrons, the smaller the barns, the more material needed for criticality, etc?

The Toshiba Allam Cycle 50 MWth scCO2 turbine was supposed to be spinning about now in La Porte, TX, for Exelon and NET Power. If it works, it'll be big news. It could be a winner for Toshiba.

If China accomplishes the RD&D for MSR tech, the nations can add another "Made in China" item to the store.

_________________
"Those who say it can’t be done are usually interrupted by others doing it."

—James Arthur Baldwin, American novelist, essayist, playwright, poet, and social critic


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 15, 2017 11:41 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Nov 30, 2006 3:30 pm
Posts: 3355
Location: Alabama
Toshiba Pays Up More Than $3B In Georgia Nuclear Expansion

Quote:
As of today, Toshiba has paid nearly $3.7 billion dollars to Georgia utilities. The Japanese company had promised the money to cover debt from its now-bankrupt subsidiary, Westinghouse. Westinghouse was the lead contractor building two nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle, which is near Augusta. The company’s bankruptcy drove costs on the nuclear expansion higher and pushed the timeline for completion back. Now, Georgia Power says the reactors will be complete in 2022, five years behind schedule, and the expansion will cost at least $22 billion. Georgia Power owns 45.7 percent of the project.


What does that tell you about their internal cost modeling when they consider paying $3.7B *right now* to be a better outcome than the alternatives?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 16, 2017 10:43 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Nov 30, 2006 3:30 pm
Posts: 3355
Location: Alabama
High power bills due to bungled nuclear project spark showdown at PSC

Quote:
Saying state officials are misguided in seeking to cut power bills for a bungled atomic energy project, SCE&G spent hours Tuesday explaining why it thinks the rate cut would hurt customers more than it would help. “There are real limits to what we can do here without causing the company to become insolvent,’’ SCE&G attorney Belton Zeigler said, noting that the power bill reduction could cost the utility $450 million annually and bring it to the brink of bankruptcy. But the company’s pleas, made during a hearing before state utility regulators, drew almost no sympathy from interest groups and state agencies that said people shouldn’t keep paying for a nuclear expansion project that won’t be built. The average residential customer pays SCE&G about $27 each month for the failed V.C. Summer reactor project. Big industrial users pay even more. All told, the nuclear charge adds up to about 18 percent of a customer’s bill.


So...the company is basically saying "we screwed up but if you let us suffer the consequences of our failure we might go bankrupt..."

This really calls in question the entire nature of the "publicly-regulated utility". It requires that the Public Service Commission exercise much tighter control over the regulated utility lest the regulated utility make choices that threaten its viability.

Read the whole article...what a mess.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Dec 16, 2017 1:46 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Dec 22, 2015 8:40 pm
Posts: 356
Location: Florida
Thank you for posting this heads-up, Kirk. It is a mess. It makes it seem like MSR tech can never happen (in my life anyway). Who can vault such challenges for fission energy generation? Yeah, I bet one answer is China.

_________________
"Those who say it can’t be done are usually interrupted by others doing it."

—James Arthur Baldwin, American novelist, essayist, playwright, poet, and social critic


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 145 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group