Energy From Thorium Discussion Forum

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PostPosted: Mar 01, 2016 5:09 am 
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E Ireland wrote:
I am minded to recommend pushing to even larger LWRs.
Like the 1700MWe Mitsubishi design.

2 Gigawatts or bust!
The problem with SMRs is that it makes nuclear sound less capable of meeting demand.
Saying I can support a country with 20 reactors makes nuclear sound better than saying I need 200 or 2000.


Gravelines is a 5.6GW plant. Who cares that it has 6 reactors?

We could build an 8GW ThorCon / Terrestrial plant before Hinkley C can be built.

It would be an 8GW plant. The fact that it has 32 reactors and 16 stem turbines is irrelevant.


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PostPosted: Mar 01, 2016 9:30 am 
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Except you would never get approval for a 32 reactor plant.
You would be pilloried in the press for wanting to causing 32 Chernobyls or some nonsense like that.

And I have my doubts that you would actually be able to print reactors that quickly.
Especially since I could build a plant with six ESBWRs entirely in parallel, and APR1400 shows how fast you can actually build LWRs if you want to build them quickly.

The only way nuclear is going to get anywhere is if we pick one design per state and simply have the government of said state start printing them.
The UK would need sixty or seventy ESBWRs to start with.


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PostPosted: Mar 01, 2016 4:18 pm 
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Joined: Feb 28, 2011 10:10 am
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An interesting, very recent article about this topic may be this:

http://www.vox.com/2016/2/29/11132930/n ... ance-korea

"Why America abandoned nuclear power (and what we can learn from South Korea)"


The article also contains links for further reading.


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PostPosted: Mar 01, 2016 5:36 pm 
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Joined: Sep 10, 2008 7:40 pm
Posts: 297
Read Lovering et al Breakthrough Insititute recent paper, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/ar ... 1516300106


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PostPosted: Mar 01, 2016 9:07 pm 
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E Ireland wrote:
Except you would never get approval for a 32 reactor plant.
You would be pilloried in the press for wanting to causing 32 Chernobyls or some nonsense like that.

And I have my doubts that you would actually be able to print reactors that quickly.
Especially since I could build a plant with six ESBWRs entirely in parallel, and APR1400 shows how fast you can actually build LWRs if you want to build them quickly.

The only way nuclear is going to get anywhere is if we pick one design per state and simply have the government of said state start printing them.
The UK would need sixty or seventy ESBWRs to start with.


Those are regulatory issues, not cost issues.

With smaller reactors you have a far better chance of securing upfront financing and getting a steady income stream to support construction.


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PostPosted: Mar 02, 2016 8:58 am 
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Download wrote:
Those are regulatory issues, not cost issues.

With smaller reactors you have a far better chance of securing upfront financing and getting a steady income stream to support construction.

Obtaining financing is not the issue, obtaining financing that is not ruinously expensive is the issue.

And cheap enough capital simply doesn't exist in the private sector.
They can make much better returns from CCGTs and similar.


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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2016 8:11 pm 
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Download wrote:
E Ireland wrote:
The french managed a production line like learning curve for 900MWe reactors.

I can't see anything below that being worthwhile.
And I am not sure you can just handwave Barakah as "lower labour costs" - the cost is so much lower that there is something seriously strange going on.
And the construction schedule is rather short.


Because they built 40 reactors back to back. We're not going to see order like that anytime soon. Do you have any justification for the claim anything smaller isn't worthwhile? W ery other type of generator gets away with far smaller per unit.


Certainly not in the west, the VVERs are pretty close though, I counted 32 reactors started construction or planned since 2000, all either VVER 1000 or VVER 1200, I didn't include Vietnam's plans as I'd heard that that plan collapsed recently. Between that and the BN-800 they started up recently it's hard not to conclude that the Russians aren't trouncing the west in the large-reactor market.

I think as 'E Ireland' points out that there's a conflict between the capital requirements and payback of a nuclear plant and the generally impatient capital markets and perhaps issues with corporate culture as a whole. Evidence of this can be seen in some of the trouble around the Finnish EPR build, here's some of the events that caught my interest:
2005 start of build
2009 Siemens pulls out
2012 Delays announced( 2015 or later start-up estimate ), estimates for cost reached 8.5 Billion euro compared to 3 billion cost
2014 Areva shutting down construction due to dispute ( 2018-2020 start-up estimate )
2016 Areva being broken up

Even without capital costing a lot of money it's pretty clear that the desire in the west to arrange and re-arrange the configuration of their companies and partnerships on a regular basis have hurt this project beyond the normal realities of new nuclear builds and financing a project. Makes me wonder if one of Atomstroyexport's advantages is being far away from wall street and the temptation to merge, spin off, partner and unpartner or otherwise fiddle with cooperate structure on timelines much shorter then any big nuclear build.


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