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Work on India’s Fast Breeder Reactors Begins

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posted on Sep, 14 2010 @ 09:49 AM

According to a news source in India, India's fast breeder reactor operator Bharatiya Nabhikiya Vidyut Nigam Ltd (Bhavini) has started preliminary work for the construction of two more nuclear plants at Kalpakkam in Tamil Nadu.

'The government has released funds to carry out preliminary activities towards setting up of two more 500 MW fast reactors at Kalpakkam (around 80 km from here). We have started the site preparatory work where the two units are likely to be located,' Prabhat Kumar, project director at Bhavini, told IANS.

The funds will be utilized for preparation of detailed project report (DPR) and other pre-project activities such as leveling the site, laying of roads, setting up assembly shops and other activities.

The project site got approval from the site selection committee last year.

The government has sanctioned construction of four more 500 MW fast reactors, of which two will be housed inside the existing nuclear island at Kalpakkam, and are expected to be ready by 2020.

Decision on locating the remaining two fast reactors is yet to be taken.


For the uninitiated, a conventional reactor uses uranium that is enriched so it is approximately 5% Uranium-235. The rest is Uranium-238. Over time, essentially two kinds of wastes develop in the nuclear fuel. 1. Fission products which are generated by the fissioning of the fuel - these are radioactive for about 500 years. 2. Actinides which are generated when Uranium-238 is bombarded by a neutron. An example of this is Plutonium-239. These are radioactive over 10,000 years. The reactor is called a Liquid Sodium cooled Fast Breeder Reactor (LSFBR). When combined with reprocessing a LSFBR can burn actinides (or Uranium-238, Thorium) from nuclear waste as fuel, leaving nothing but fission products. Therefore running nuclear 'waste' through a LSFBR combined with reprocessing essentially eliminates all concerns about nuclear waste because it destroys it while creating a massive amount of energy. One soda can of Depleted Uranium (or spent nuclear fuel) + FBR = energy for 3,350 houses for 1 year while destroying nuclear waste. 20% of nuclear capacity would have to be a LSFBR to essentially eliminate all concerns about nuclear waste in about 25 years.

(By 'U.S. nuclear resources' they mean Spent Nuclear Fuel (SNF), and Depleted Uranium (DU), also known as nuclear waste.)
(source: General Atomics EM2 presentation (link beneath))

An aside: On another note, General Atomics has proposed a similar reactor type for the United States called the EM2. It is a Gas Cooled Fast Breeder Reactor (GCFBR), but has the disadvantage of taking longer to eliminate waste. It is designed to be 25% cheaper than current nuclear technology, but needs significant development to get the ball rolling so to speak. The US also had a program to develop a LSFBR technology, but the program was canceled after decades of work only a few years to completion - this reactor was known as the Integral Fast Reactor (IFR).

General Atomics Energy Multiplyer.

Nuclear and defense supplier General Atomics announced Sunday it will launch a 12-year program to develop a new kind of small, commercial nuclear reactor in the U.S. that could run on spent fuel from big reactors.

In starting its campaign to build the helium-cooled reactor, General Atomics is joining a growing list of companies willing to place a long-shot bet on reactors so small they could be built in factories and hauled on trucks or trains.


Integral Fast Reactor.

It seems like something that only a crazed conspiracy theorist would come up with. A source of carbon-free energy that holds the potential to provide base load power for the planet for thousands of years hence, and which could be built along the existing transmission grid and even be housed within retrofitted coal-fired power stations. A process that could eat existing nuclear waste instead of needing to store it in highly secure vaults such as Yucca Mountain for hundreds of millennia. A technology that enjoyed large investments in R&D by government, only to have the funding zeroed for political reasons when close to large-scale demonstration — and then the scientists involved told not to publicise this fact. Well that, in caricature, is the basic story of Integral Fast Reactor (IFR) nuclear power.


You probably haven't heard of the IFR because the scientists were told not to talk about it.

And why are we shooting the largest energy resource in the world all over Iraq?

Hopefully this effort is rapidly scaled up to help lower consumption of natural gas and coal, eliminate concerns about nuclear waste, provide industrial process heat for synfuels, provide desalinization, provide electricity for transportation, lower air pollution, lower water pollution, and be part of the solution to mitigate global warming. It is also possible to use old nuclear weapons as fuel. The possibility of a meltdown may have been eliminated (it was in the IFR), but I can't definitively make an answer.

edit on 14/9/2010 by C0bzz because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 19 2010 @ 05:56 AM
This is good technology, and it'd be nice if we could implement stuff like this to better our economy, considering what a crap hole it is.

But, of course, as usual, I'm sure we've plenty of technologies to do this stuff, here in America, but the #ing country is ran by lobbyist.


Good post c0bzz.

posted on Sep, 24 2010 @ 12:14 PM
What I don't get is that radioactivity is electrical energy right off as positive
and negative charges.
I don't see radioactivity going away from unstable atoms.
Its an old story.
Atomic energy had to provide heat for the steam engineers.
The oil kings won't let Atomic energy take over until the last dropped is shipped.
Electrical devices just will not surface even though they fly by once in a while.

posted on Oct, 1 2010 @ 08:58 AM
I prefer solar power

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