Discussing nuclear energy in Australia

On August 5, 2014, Professor Barry Brook, Ian Hore-Lacy and Professor Ken Balwin chatted with ABC [Australian Broadcast Corporation] 666 morning host Genevieve Jacobs about nuclear energy. Each member of the panel provided a brief statement and then there was a lengthy question and answer period lasting nearly an hour.

You really should watch the complete discussion. If you are pressed for time, however, scroll forward to time mark 40:10 to listen to a questioner who has apparently swallowed the Storm-Smith argument about low grade uranium ores hook, line and sinker. Barry Brook and Ian Hore-Lacy respond with admirable calm and provide credible facts that make the questions sound almost ridiculous.

HTR-PM – Nuclear-heated gas producing superheated steam

The first HTR-PM (High Temperature Reactor – Pebble Module), one of the more intriguing nuclear plant designs, is currently under construction on the coast of the Shidao Bay near Weihai, China. This system uses evolutionary engineering design principles that give it a high probability of success, assuming that the developers and financial supporters maintain their […]

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Fission is an elegant way to heat a gas

What if it was possible to combine the low capital cost, reliability, and responsive operations of simple cycle combustion gas turbines with the low fuel cost and zero-emission capability of an actinide (uranium, thorium, or plutonium) fuel source? Machines like that could disrupt a few business models while giving the world’s economy a powerful new […]

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Nuclear-Powered Trans-Ocean Shipping – 3rd place in New York Advanced Energy contest

I received an update from Benjamin Haas, the SUNY Maritime student who has been working on nuclear powered ship designs from a complete systems perspective for the past three semesters. He and his team have not just focused on the technical aspects of designing a power plant and a ship that could take full advantage […]

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B&W mPower cover story about lack of interest is bogus

Update: (June 20, 2014) Here is the chart of B&W’s stock price during the past year. It is interesting to note the 10% drop between May 9, 2014 and May 18, 2014 and the fact that the stock continues to trade in a range centered around the new, lower price established after that drop. End […]

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SMRs – Why Not Now? Then When?

I have shamelessly borrowed the title of one of the talks given during the first day of the Nuclear Energy Insider 4th Annual Small Modular Reactor (SMR) Conference as being representative of both the rest of the agenda and the conversations that I had in the hallways during the breaks. For the past five years, […]

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Westinghouse’s Roderick shifts resources from SMR to AP1000

NuScale was the sole winner in the latest round under the DOE’s Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for small modular reactors (SMR). The DOE announced its decision in December 2013. As a result of that decision, Westinghouse has shifted internal resources from working on a 225 MWe SMR to focus more on continued refinements and completion […]

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Accelerator Driven System promoters are playing to irrational antinuclear fears

By Ed Pheil I mentioned at the Thorium Energy Conference 2013 that accelerator driven systems (ADS) were likely to hurt the nuclear industry more than help it with the following discussion. The ADS proponents are justifying their participation, including with thorium, on the basis of two concepts that cater to the anti-nuclear crowd. A) ADS […]

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Fantasy Crossfire debate: Ed Lyman versus Rod Adams on fast breeder reactors

CNN has done a masterful job of seizing the opportunity provided by Robert Stone’s thought-provoking Pandora’s Promise to generate a passionate discussion about the use of nuclear energy — a vitally important topic — at a critical time in American history. The decision makers at that somewhat fading network should be congratulated. Of course, generating […]

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I want a nuclear plant in my backyard. So do some of my neighbors

  Watch more video from the CNN channel on Frequency   Though I sometimes suffer from the blues, I am not crazy — I swear. Even though I am just a guy who often blogs in my PJs, I’m also pretty sure that I am not a nobody. In fact, none of us are nobodies, […]

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On Plutonium, Nuclear War, and Nuclear Peace

By NNadir I trust — and I hope I am justified in this — that no one wants a nuclear war. I know I don’t. We already have a set of environmental problems that are worse than a limited nuclear war, and may be facing an environmental crisis that might be as dire as a […]

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Big bets in energy technology from “Beyond Petroleum”

As an energy industry observer with a long memory, I was somewhat bemused by a recent interview aired on Platts Energy Week. Bill Loveless sat down with David Eyton, BP’s head of technology, to talk about the exciting new technologies that his company is developing. The company is making substantial investments; in June 2013, BP […]

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