It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Originally posted by Student X
Given your lack of expertise in the relevant fields, I recommend this book. One of the best sci-fi books ever written.
I want one of those vehicles like on Back to the Future where you can put almost anything in it as a fuel source.
Nuclear power plants smaller than a garden shed and able to power 20,000 homes will be on sale within five years, say scientists at Los Alamos...
The miniature reactors will be factory-sealed, contain no weapons-grade material, have no moving parts and will be nearly impossible to steal..
The US government has licensed the technology to Hyperion, a New Mexico-based company which said last week that it has taken its first firm orders and plans to start mass production within five years. 'Our goal is to generate electricity for 10 cents a kilowatt hour anywhere in the world,' said John Deal, chief executive of Hyperion. 'They will cost approximately $25m [£16m] each. For a community with 10,000 households, that is a very affordable $2,500 per home.' [Runs for 30 to 40 years without refueling or mantainance ~ CV]
Deal claims to have more than 100 firm orders, largely from the oil and electricity industries, but says the company is also targeting developing countries and isolated communities. 'It's leapfrog technology,' he said.
The company plans to set up three factories to produce 4,000 plants between 2013 and 2023. 'We already have a pipeline for 100 reactors, and we are taking our time to tool up to mass-produce this reactor.'... www.guardian.co.uk...
Lawrence Livermore, Los Alamos, and Argonne national laboratories are designing a self-contained nuclear reactor with tamper-resistant features. Called SSTAR (small, sealed, transportable, autonomous reactor), this next-generation reactor will produce 10 to 100 megawatts electric and can be safely transported on ship or by a heavy-haul transport truck.
Thorium reactors would be cheap. The primary cost in nuclear reactors traditionally is the huge safety requirements. Regarding meltdown in a thorium reactor, Rubbia writes, “Both the EA and MF can be effectively protected against military diversions and exhibit an extreme robustness against any conceivable accident, always with benign consequences. In particular the [beta]-decay heat is comparable in both cases and such that it can be passively dissipated in the environment, thus eliminating the risks of “melt-down”. Thorium reactors can breed uranium-233, which can theoretically be used for nuclear weapons. However, denaturing thorium with its isotope, ionium, eliminates the proliferation threat.
Like any nuclear reactor, thorium reactors will be hot and radioactive, necessitating shielding. The amount of radioactivity scales with the size of the plant. It so happens that thorium itself is an excellent radiation shield, but lead and depleted uranium are also suitable. Smaller plants (100 megawatts), such as the Department of Energy’s small, sealed, transportable, autonomous reactor (SSTAR) will be 15 meters tall, 3 meters wide and weigh 500 tonnes, using only a few cm of shielding.....
A thorium reactor does not, in fact, need a containment wall. Putting the reactor vessel in a standard industrial building is sufficient.
Because thorium reactors will make nuclear reactors more decentralized. Because of no risk of proliferation or meltdown, thorium reactors can be made of almost any size. A 500 ton, 100MW SSTAR-sized thorium reactor could fit in a large industrial room, require little maintenance, and only cost $25 million. A hypothetical 5 ton, truck-sized 1 MW thorium reactor might run for only $250,000 but would generate enough electricity for 1,000 people for the duration of its operating lifetime, using only 20 kg of thorium fuel per year, running almost automatically, and requiring safety checks as infrequently as once a year. That would be as little as $200/year after capital costs are paid off, for a thousand-persons worth of electricity!
Even smaller reactors might be built. The molten salt may have a temperature of around 1,400°F, but as long as it can be contained by the best alloys, it is not really a threat. The small gasoline explosions in your automobile today are of a similar temperature. In the future, personal vehicles may be powered by the slow burning of thorium, or at least, hydrogen produced by a thorium reactor. Project Pluto, a nuclear-powered ramjet missile, produced 513 megawatts of power for only $50 million. At that price ratio, a 10 kW reactor might cost $1,000 and provide enough electricity for 10 persons/year while consuming only 1 kg of thorium every 5 years, itself only weighing 1000kg - similar to the weight of a refrigerator. I’m not sure if miniaturization to that degree is possible, or if the scaling laws really hold. But it seems consistent with what I’ve heard about nuclear power in the past.... www.thorium.tv...
Update (November 12, 2008):
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) contacted PhysOrg.com to state that the NRC has no plans to review the Hyperion design in the near future, although the NRC and Hyperion have had preliminary talks. Because the Hyperion design is unique, the NRC expects that it will take significant time to ensure safety requirements. In a response to a letter from October 2008, the NRC stated:
“Hyperion Power Generation is in the early stages of development of this design, and very little testing information is available for this design concept. Hyperion Power Generation has indicated that it will submit technical reports to support a pre-application review in late FY 2009. The NRC cannot engage in any meaningful, formal technical interaction with the potential applicant until we receive those reports. Because of the very limited amount of test data and lack of operating experience available for a uranium hydride reactor, the NRC staff anticipates that a licensing review would involve significant technical, safety, and licensing policy issues.”
May 17, 2010 (Bloomberg) -- Manufacturers of refrigerator-sized nuclear reactors will seek approval from U.S. authorities within a year to help supply the world’s growing electricity demand.
John Deal, chief executive officer of Hyperion Power Generation Inc., intends to apply for a license “within a year” for plants that would power a small factory or town too remote for traditional utility grid connections...
Certifying and building small reactors will require the same multi-year licensing procedure necessary for bigger plants. And since no small-scale systems are operating, there’s no track record to know how well they will work.
“Whether it’s a small or large reactor, the hoops you have to jump through are the same,” said Hans-Holger Rogner, head of economic planning at the International Atomic Energy Agency. “You open up a Pandora’s Box of intervention from society every time you try to build any kind of nuclear plant.”
..So far, no manufacturer has sought certification for any small reactor, according to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Formal approvals would probably take three to five years, the same as for bigger reactors, said Scott Burnell, a spokesman for the commission.
Small reactors have been used in U.S. submarines since the USS Nautilus was commissioned in 1954. Russia’s Rosatom Corp. is using its experience on submarines and icebreakers to develop atomic plants for floating barges...
Environmentalists are concerned the small reactors would pose the same risk of leaking radioactive materials as their larger counterparts, said Jan Beranek, nuclear energy project leader at Greenpeace International in Amsterdam.
“Terrorists could hijack a reactor and directly use it to cause a meltdown or use it to fabricate fissile materials for later use in a weapon,” Beranek said.... www.businessweek.com...
Originally posted by crimvelvet
reply to post by boondock-saint
If you have to say good bye to gasoline, there are other options.
I know a local farmer whose pick up runs on chicken manure (Methane gas)
This is what the USA SHOULD be pursuing NOW!
Well I have seen a boat load of threads lately about this topic. They talk of all kinds of topics about gas alternatives, even one thread gave blueprints on how to make your backyard into an oil refinery.
It can only come from gasoline right? Wrong, gasoline can be made synthetically via a process called the "methanol to gasoline"
In the 1950s and 1960s, U.S. scientists ignored thorium, and went with uranium because uranium produces plutonium the key ingredient in nuclear bombs.
Originally posted by BearTruth
Ok, guys, I think I have the ultimate answer...www.wired.com... I have never posted a link before, so if this doesn't work, blame my inexperience.
This would be killing two birds with one stone. Eliminating the absolute abundance of human waste, and producing usable energy.
Beranek just displayed his utter ignorance of this technology. It is THORIUM not URANIUM. It is as different as salt and sugar.
You can not build bombs using thorium and it does not have the radiation headaches of uranium either.
not a good idea in my opinion, one small act of vandalism and 10,000 homes are without power indefinitely. Each home having it's own individual power source would be more stable and secure.
Plus, how many small communities have a spare $25M lying around ??? As these people want their money up front.
Nissan LEAF Electric Car
Nissan LEAF ™the new car.™ 100% electric, no-gas. *as low as $25280 net value, after tax savings. MSRP $32780, with federal tax savings from 0 to $7500... www.nissanusa.com...
Bio-Bug: Car run on human waste is launched
A car that runs on methane gas produced by human waste has been launched and its makers claim drivers cannot tell the difference.