Energy From Thorium Discussion Forum

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PostPosted: Jun 23, 2009 11:25 pm 
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arcs_n_sparks wrote:
The US/USSR HEU program is structured so that blend-down does not have a serious impact on the commercial commodity market (at least that is how it is structured and executed to date).


It would seem the new deal signed in February allows for sales of Russian enriched uranium directly to U.S. utilities. Before the agreement, such direct transactions were not permitted.

It was the old agreement that restricted Russian uranium shipments, out of concern that Russia would dump uranium in the U.S. market and financially hurt the major American uranium supplier, USEC Inc.

The Russia's Atomic Energy Agency are saying the volumes of direct deliveries of uranium enrichment services may total 20 percent of the market.


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PostPosted: Jun 24, 2009 12:18 am 
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DV82XL wrote:
jaro wrote:
That works out to 5.5% LEU product.

It would be very useful to try to find out what, if any, flexibility the contractor has in product specification and plant operating license....


Maybe that's an average with some 12% to 19.75% for research reactors part of the mix.

I would be very surprised to find that what they could do wasn't specified down to the last gram.

I still think the whole exercise is a shameful waste of SWU's.

Very true. With HEU or plutonium in India's hands, for example, thorium fueled reactors could come in 7 years in place of 37. Supply of nuclear fuel would at least double for the whole world as a result. 220MW PHWRs could be available @ $1.20/watt to anyone who asked, with option of thorium based fuel.


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PostPosted: Jun 24, 2009 6:48 am 
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DV82XL wrote:
I would be very surprised to find that what they could do wasn't specified down to the last gram.

That's my view exactly.
Moreover, as a consequence, I doubt that they would be blending "some 12% to 19.75% for research reactors".
Even for a down-blending plant, the licensing exercise is onerous -- especially for one handling HEU.
Very interested in knowing if they got a license to do more than a single blend....


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PostPosted: Jun 24, 2009 7:15 am 
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Jagdish wrote
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220MW PHWRs could be available @ $1.20/watt to anyone who asked, with option of thorium based fuel.220MW PHWRs could be available @ $1.20/watt to anyone who asked, with option of thorium based fuel.


$1.20/watt seems very attractive, even impressive! Why are not Candu-style reactors more popular?


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PostPosted: Jun 24, 2009 10:31 am 
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jaro wrote:
That's my view exactly.
Moreover, as a consequence, I doubt that they would be blending "some 12% to 19.75% for research reactors".


Yes it's unlikely, it was just a plausible guess to account for such a high average enrichment percentage.

robert.hargraves wrote:
$1.20/watt seems very attractive, even impressive! Why are not Candu-style reactors more popular?


I suspect they will be if NPCIL can indeed deliver at that price.


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PostPosted: Jun 24, 2009 1:46 pm 
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By the middle of the next decade, there will be a sea change in the nuclear fuel business and as a result the nuclear industry in general. Reactor fuel production plants will cost 1/5 as much to construct as the current generation plants and produce electric power as a byproduct of the fuel creation process rather than use electric power to produce fuel as is currently done. This new technology will be so compelling that the vested interests of the past will never prevail against it.

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PostPosted: Jun 24, 2009 7:08 pm 
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Quote:
Washington (Platts)--24Jun2009

DOE will issue a finding of "no significant impact" on the sale of
portions of its excess uranium inventory in domestic uranium markets, DOE's William Szymanski told officials at NRC's annual fuel cycle conference June 24. The finding results from an environmental impact statement DOE began work on last year under former President George W. Bush's administration as the department surveyed how best to manage 59,000 metric tons of DOE-owned uranium now stored in cylinders. The finding will soon be published in the Federal Register, said Szymanski, who is the director of global nuclear fuel assurance in DOE's Office of Nuclear Energy. Then-Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman issued a statement last year that said DOE would release uranium in amounts eventually equaling about 10% of annual US requirements. Such releases "should not have an adverse material impact on the domestic uranium industry," it said. Szymanski said DOE still "needs to cross all the 'Ts' and dot all the
'Is'" to ensure President Barack Obama's administration approves such a plan.



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