The Story of Experimental Breeder Reactor II

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posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 09:59 AM
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EBR-II was an experimental liquid sodium fast breeder reactor that operated from the 1965 to 1994. In summary a fully developed design would:

1. Destroy existing nuclear waste reducing the long-term radiotoxicity of existing nuclear waste by many orders of magnitude.
2. With no mining is required for hundreds of years as existing depleted uranium stockpiles are destroyed.
3. Be very safe via the use of the laws of nature for safety, rather than operators.

The EBR-II was canceled in 1994, after decades of work, just years before the technology was fully developed. The technology is sorely needed now as a politically viable solution to nuclear waste must be found, as well as an energy source that is clean and non-polluting. In 1986, just three weeks before Chernobyl, the safety of the system was demonstrated:


26 years ago and only 3 weeks before Chernobyl, a US reactor underwent a Common Mode Failure of the type which devastated the Fukushima-Diiachi reactors. 70 scientists and technologists were jammed into the reactor control room in, what ordinary folks would have considered, a suicide pact. At that point, the Common Mode Failure occured and nature took its course.

In Dr John Sackett's word: ".....the worst accident that could befall a nuclear power system, that worst accident is a complete loss of electric power to everything, back-up as well, and failure of all the safety systems that shut the reactor down...."

Darrell Pfannensteil was issuing instructions to his plant operators as the event occured. He had told colleagues beforehand that he was not scared of this type of accident occuring, so what was his response? In his own words: ".....we got to watch the forces of nature shut the reactor down.....we'd found a reactor that could protect itself....."

After 33 years of dedicated, productive work, the political decision to shut down EBR-II was made and in September 1994, Dr Sackett recollects that: "....when I had to go to the operating crews and tell them we'd got the order to shut EBR-II down.....the reaction amongst all the crews was - doesn't the country realise what they're losing here?....". Near to tears, he goes on to say: ".....I remember directing the shut-down---and the scram---and just silence...."


lftrsuk.blogspot.co.uk...


A 20 minute documentary on EBR-II can be found here:

vimeo.com...

An explanation of the technology is found in my other thread, here.

The UK may build a fully developed version of this technology to destroy Plutonium that has accumulated at Sellafield.


edit on 8/4/12 by C0bzz because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 11:14 AM
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Well this makes alot of sense shutdown a relatively safe technology so we can promote an unsafe one. Seems to be the way things work these days doesn't it.



posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 11:46 AM
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reply to post by lonegurkha
 


The reason this didn't become mainstream technology is because you cannot enrich isotopes to weapons grade in the system.
That is why we still have dodgy plutonium reactors all over the globe-It was sold to us as a source of energy so cheap it would not be worth metering,when in reality it was so we could all build weapons of mass death.

Screwed up world..



posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 03:00 PM
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Actually the Navy is still playing with breeder reactors, last i knew. Breeder reactors have their pros and cons as well. Its a totally different breed of nuclear reactor than the BWR's that are mostly in service in the states. The CANdu reactor or Pebble bed reactors are inherently more safe than the BWR. Breeders are great for taking waste isotopes and changing their composition into something else, ie. Weapons grade Nuclear fuel, usable fuel in other types of reactors etc. There are reasons the Breeders are not being used in civilian based facilities around the world, it breaks certain treaties In many areas with the Nuclear weapons treaty. There are actually other means of changing nuclear waste into non volatile elements. The technology has been around for a few years, but the expense of doing it is extremely expensive. thus is why we bury out nuclear waste instead of changing it into non violate elements.

We gotta remember the Nuclear commission is all about profit, not the bettering of mankind. they would rather save money and bury the waste than spend more than their net and build facilities that will properly deal with nuclear wastes and leftover isotopes.

Sadly one of the fathers of the idea of deactivating nuclear waste was killed in a car accident, but his legacy lives on.
there are nuclear physicists and scientists who have followed in his footsteps to keep the research up.

www.sciencedaily.com...


There are hordes of sites out there about this topic. just Google deactivating nuclear waste and nuclear waste transmutation to name a few.



posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 03:27 PM
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We need technologies like this now more than ever. Hopefully someone with more sense than god gave a mule in government will get behind a push to build more of these reactors.



posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 03:44 PM
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Excellent thread OP. S+F. Another example of an brilliant technology thrown away because of political expediency and profit margins. Eventually the human race will get to a point where someone in control finally accepts that this planets survival (and the human species) means more than profit. Can't keep trashing earth forever.

The PBR design is good and I believe currently being researched by the military. The upcoming generation IV reactors are the HGTR designs using pebble bed reactors. Here's another interesting site concerning smaller scale nuclear power, I believe that they are receiving funding from the US and South Africa for this design.



posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 08:49 PM
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Even if the technology existed it would probably take us more than our lifetime to get rid of our current stockpile and Russia's. Now, what do you do with the accumulated waste during that "lifetime"??



posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 10:23 PM
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Originally posted by hoochymama
Even if the technology existed it would probably take us more than our lifetime to get rid of our current stockpile and Russia's. Now, what do you do with the accumulated waste during that "lifetime"??


Feed the breeder.



posted on Apr, 9 2012 @ 02:40 AM
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Originally posted by chr0naut

Originally posted by hoochymama
Even if the technology existed it would probably take us more than our lifetime to get rid of our current stockpile and Russia's. Now, what do you do with the accumulated waste during that "lifetime"??


Feed the breeder.



No... No... He's right. Let's just give up.



posted on Apr, 9 2012 @ 08:27 AM
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I think as long as we obsess on the fuels that come from our manufacture, or mining, we will be on a hiding to nothing. Although the technology that is prevailing at the moment may not be the end answer to our energy needs, renewables are far more promising than anything that has a by product of any kind.



posted on Apr, 9 2012 @ 10:18 AM
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reply to post by Silcone Synapse
 


Man you got that right.
But this is about what I would expect from our psycotic leaders.



posted on Apr, 9 2012 @ 10:45 AM
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reply to post by C0bzz I recently had the pleasure of visiting Atomic City and Arco, Idaho and went to the museum there. It is really amazing being able to take photos of the worlds first nuclear reactor that supplied power to a town. I litterally stood on top of the reactor vessel and had my picture taken.
Much of the original equipment is there for the public to see and there is a display that has a containment vessel with waldos that allow you to manipulate different shaped objects inside. Very cool. I highly reccomend the tour if you find yourself in the area (which you have to really try to do). Also Idaho National Laboratory is very nearby. And who knows what is really going on out there?!! I have heard stories ranging from the training of Navy nuke techs to reverse engineering of UFO tech. this area is not very well known to the general public and is one of the most isolated areas in the continental U.S. And for good reason.



posted on Apr, 9 2012 @ 07:54 PM
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Perhaps safe energy technology is known right now and can't be used.
Also with all the work documented the reactor can be set up in no time if needed.

Who is doing all this planning for us and where is the disclosure, yeah I'd like to know.



posted on Apr, 10 2012 @ 12:45 AM
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Originally posted by Silcone Synapse
reply to post by lonegurkha
 


The reason this didn't become mainstream technology is because you cannot enrich isotopes to weapons grade in the system.
That is why we still have dodgy plutonium reactors all over the globe-It was sold to us as a source of energy so cheap it would not be worth metering,when in reality it was so we could all build weapons of mass death.

Screwed up world..


Added emphasis. Not only that. We've now got 100s of reactors all over the world with extremely toxic Spent nuclear fuel (wiki) that is in elevated "fuel pools" with earth-critical cooling systems depending on power. An EMP, or earthquake or TSUNAMI - and we get another Fukushima mess.



And yea, that's worse than my video!


+ I for one believe Thorium Reactors are the way-out from our current situation with pending nuclear disaster. If we don't invest in it and built enough of them our children WILL DIE.
edit on 4/10/2012 by reitze because: + links





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