How do metal alloy fuel fast reactors respond to rapid reactivity insertion events?

Update: (Posted Feb 21, 2015 at 7:22) The title has been modified after initial discussion indicated it was incomplete. Other related updates are in blue font. Fast neutron spectrum reactors offer one answer to the trump question that is often used to halt informative discussions about using more atomic energy to reduce our excessive dependence […]

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Proving a Negative – Why Modern Used Nuclear Fuel Cannot Be Used to Make a Weapon

Editor’s note: This post was first published on Jul 24, 2010. While working on a new post involving the use of fast spectrum reactors to address many important society challenges, I thought it would be worthwhile to share this important background piece to let you start thinking about some of the misinformation you might have […]

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Senator Clinton Anderson on fossil fuel opposition to atomic energy

Senator Clinton Anderson (D-NM) was a long time member and sometimes Chairman of the Joint Committee on Atomic Energy. As part of my energy history research, I’ve been reading Outsider in the Senate: Senator Clinton Anderson’s Memoirs. There are several passages in that book worthy of note. While the three services competed with one another […]

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TV series marathon – Men Who Built America

I took advantage of circumstances and technology last night to indulge in a TV series marathon consisting of watching the entire season of the 2012 History Channel series titled The Men Who Built America. Though originally aired in 19 episodes, Netflix is showing series as four 80-90 minute segments. One of the most eye-opening things […]

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Energizing visit to UC Berkeley’s Nuclear Engineering Department

On Feb 9, 2015, I had the opportunity to visit the faculty and students at the University of California Berkeley. Prof. Per Peterson invited me out to give a colloquium talk and to see some of the interesting work that his colleagues and students were doing in advanced nuclear technology. One of the primary research […]

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Discussion strategy on Atomic Insights

Some of you may have noticed that many Atomic Insights comment threads have been turned off. As much as I enjoy the give and take here, I’ve decided it’s time to be more judicious in my time management. Moderating this site has become one of those “part time” jobs that threatens to overwhelm the real […]

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What Aircraft Manufacturers Can Teach the Nuclear Industry

Evan is a New Hampshire resident who will be graduating from high school in 2015 and plans to pursue a career in engineering. Few innovations have shaped the world as dramatically as the development of the airplane. In less than a century, mankind went from riding horses to flying non-stop half way around the world. […]

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Slowly accelerate fast reactor development

In one corner are people who are certain that breeder reactors that can effectively use the earth’s massive supply of fertile isotopes — thorium and uranium 238 — should be pursued as rapidly as possible with the assistance of prioritized government funding. In the other corner are people who are just as certain that those […]

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Elite international experts to debate SMRs’ role in nuclear co-generation and hybrid systems

Atomic Insights is a media partner for the 5th Annual Small Modular Reactor Summit, scheduled for April 14-15 in Charlotte, NC. Conference value increases when information about the event reaches people who are keenly interested in the topics that will be discussed. We will be running several pieces that will help Atomic Insights readers decide […]

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Atomic Show #232 – Against the Tide by RADM Dave Oliver

Though it has been more than 30 years since Admiral Rickover finally retired from his position as the head of Naval Reactors, his legacy lives on in the people he directly trained and in the people that those initial Navy nukes trained and led. A new book titled Against the Tide: Rickover’s Leadership Principles and […]

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Should NRC spend time and money simplifying transition to decommissioning?

In the past three years, five nuclear reactors in the United States have permanently ceased operations and are in the process of transitioning to a decommissioning status. There is not a well defined process for making that transition and for applying appropriate, risk-informed regulations. As a consequence of that situation, the owner of each plant […]

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Suppressing Differing Opinions to Promote “No Safe Dose” Mantra

Dr. Ed Calabrese has published additional installments in his continuing effort to illuminate the methods by which the 16 member Genetics Committee of the 1956 National Academy of Sciences Biological Effects of Atomic Radiation committee altered history. That small group of colleagues, chaired by the man who approved their research grant requests during the period […]

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