Taking the bloom off of the nuclear rose

Yesterday I came across a New York Times front page article from July 7, 1971 titled Nation’s Energy Crisis: Nuclear Future Looms. It is the second article in a three part article on the energy crisis that was capturing America’s attention in 1971 – two years before the Arab Oil Embargo. The discovery knocked me […]

Read more »

Sabotage at TMI – Part 3

There is a good reason why life often imitates art in the form of fictional stories; good creative writing teachers emphasize the importance of research and a firm understanding of reality. Writers are taught — or learn on their own — that people prefer reading stories that are believable. Even fantasy or science fiction follows […]

Read more »

Did Sabotage Start TMI accident? – Part 2

The first installment of this series, titled Sabotage may have started Three Mile Island accident, describes how a number of individually improbable equipment conditions came together at 4:00 am on March 28, 1979, one year — to the minute — after the start of commercial operation at Three Mile Island (TMI) unit 2. It also […]

Read more »

Another blogger for nuclear energy – Atoms for California

There is a new web site / blog with a very interesting mission – changing the conversation about nuclear energy in California. Atoms for California is an attractive site run by a person with a unique perspective about the use of nuclear energy in California. His father has worked as a nuclear engineer for Southern […]

Read more »

Energy versus Power – Energy delivered rapidly equals power

A BusinessWeek article titled Putin $14 Billion Nuclear Deal Wins Over Russia Critic Orban recognizes the importance of recent Russian power deals to supply gas, oil, and nuclear energy facilities. There is widespread confusion about energy versus power. Conversations about the business of selling hydrocarbons or electricity are described as being about energy, but the […]

Read more »

Radiation: The Facts

I highly recommend a terrific brochure titled “Radiation: The Facts”. The document concentrates accurate information about radiation into a a tri-fold that can be read and understood in just a few minutes. It is a valuable presentation handout, would be a useful addition to the material offered in doctor’s offices, and should be a part […]

Read more »

Russia using oil wealth to finance nuclear exports

Russia has announced plans to lend Hungary $14 billion at below market rates to finance the construction of additional nuclear energy production units at the existing Paks nuclear power station. The announcement is one more piece of evidence showing that Russia continues to diversify its income by exporting nuclear power stations to as large a […]

Read more »

As High As Relatively Safe (AHARS) – Sensible radiation standards

Ionizing radiation is a known, studied and understood phenomenon to which the Precautionary Principle no longer applies. It is time to shift the paradigm that governs radiation exposure limits to a sensible standard of “As High As Relatively Safe” (AHARS). Aside: I’m crediting Dr. Wade Allison with the etymology of the term – AHARS. I […]

Read more »

Chinese plan to dominate nuclear market worldwide

A California-based correspondent shared the following vignette to a private email list early this morning. An aside — had dinner with a Stanford biz prof teaching entrepreneurship. His 15 Chinese students were at the table too (big table). A few spoke English. One is international marketing head for China Nuclear Power Engineering Company — largest […]

Read more »

Nuclear Energy Insider SMR Conference – Charlotte, NC March 31-April 1

Nuclear Energy Insider has announced that it is planning its 4th annual conference aimed at people who are professionally interested in small modular reactors. The conference will be held March 31 – April 1, at the Ritz-Carlton in Charlotte, NC. The organizers have lined up a veritable “who’s who” of people involved in SMR design, […]

Read more »

Antarctic misadventure failed to plan for resilience

I’ve been pondering the misadventures of the Akademik Shokalskiy for several days, thinking about the difference in result between an excursion planned on the cheap by people who depend on things going smoothy and a voyage planned by people who included contingencies and had access to more capable technology. In the summer of 1994, the […]

Read more »