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What do you have against nuclear?
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Vortex



Joined: 16 May 2006
Posts: 6097

PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
But of course we have done almost nothing in those 50 years...

FIFTY years is a long, long time.

Surely you must have a feel for the scale of this time?

The 'half life' of UK companies is just 5 years.

Google has only been around for 10 years.

The Concorde project took 7 years from first agreement to first flight.

The jet engine took 9 years from invention to the first manned flight.

The Apollo project took 9 years to put a man on the Moon (a few years longer if you go back to Project Mercury)

The annual budgets per country may be low - but the TOTAL global expenditure on fusion over 50 years must be HUGE.

So I re-iterate: anyone involved in ZETA, JET etc .. and maybe ITER .. should examine their conscience.
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clv101
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm with Vortex here and not from a position of total ignorance, I too hold a degree in physics and have more than a passing acquaintance with nuclear fission, fusion and plasma physics. The progress made towards commercial fusion is hopelessly disappointing.
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Vortex



Joined: 16 May 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I was turned down for a job at JET 25 years ago,

Re-apply.

The job is still there but the last three 'tenants' have since retired or died - in fact the latest left just today.

The seat will still be warm and the 'job spec' hasn't changed since you were there.

The filing cabinets will be empty, but there will be a good collection of postcards from 'Fusion Today' conferences held in various nice parts of the globe over the decades.
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Totally_Baffled



Joined: 24 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to agree with you guys. Thats not to say it wasnt worth researching upto now, but even by admission of pro ITER people , commercial reactors are 50 years away.

Its missed its window.

In 50 years time, we are going to have so many resource issues - erecting a gazillion fusion reactors globally isnt going to be possible. This on top of building all the other associated infrastructure and training shed loads of nuclear fusion engineers!

Its not as if electricity can make plastics, lubricants, synthetic rubber, chemicals, detergents and god knows how many other exotic materials provided by oil used in a god knows how many products anyway!

Best to ditch the energy consuming junk - divert the saved energy and materials into the renewable energy infrastructure. Going to have to do it at some point anyway , so might as well start asap?
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STG



Joined: 07 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

clv101 wrote:
I'm with Vortex here and not from a position of total ignorance, I too hold a degree in physics and have more than a passing acquaintance with nuclear fission, fusion and plasma physics. The progress made towards commercial fusion is hopelessly disappointing.


Ok the progress is going terribly slow, but I hope you see the huge progress that has been made...and perhaps see the mistake of the first fusion people that their estimates were somewhat to simplistic? Or they were perhaps somewhat to optimistic?

And in responce to Vortex:

Do you mean I should check my conscience?

How many prototypes weren't destroyed by the US in attempting to get into space? How many useless millions weren't spend on that? The fusion community doesn't have the money to build whatever they want, there a numbers of ideas around...But only one can be selected due to budget constraints. So a lot of simulations are done before something is tested and so on...

And of course there a now delays because ITER has already a huge delay! JET has almost delivered its maximum knowledge, ITER should already have been around. And actually the first ITER would have been a DEMO plant...But wait due to budget constraints this was also delayed...really check your history! And what's wrong with conferences? Not everybody is working on JET or on ITER. Some are still working on other devices such as stellarators and conferences are the perfect opportunity to exchange knowledge!
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Eternal Sunshine



Joined: 08 Aug 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the Ecologist it says a report by David Flemming states by 2025 "the nuclear industry will need to divert all of it's energy to cleaning up it's waste". Also he says there'll be a "uranium supply crunch" by 2020 anyway.

Makes it seem even more stupid for the the UK to be bothering going down the nuclear route. Rolling Eyes
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STG



Joined: 07 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eternal Sunshine wrote:
In the Ecologist it says a report by David Flemming states by 2025 "the nuclear industry will need to divert all of it's energy to cleaning up it's waste". Also he says there'll be a "uranium supply crunch" by 2020 anyway.

Makes it seem even more stupid for the the UK to be bothering going down the nuclear route. Rolling Eyes


That"s only if you believe stuff like the lean economy...and natural minded uranium isn't the only thing that can keep nuclear reactors running! And ever considered that the cleaning up of waste can produce huge amounts of energy and new material by transmutation?
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Eternal Sunshine



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 10:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

STG wrote:
And ever considered that the cleaning up of waste can produce huge amounts of energy and new material by transmutation?


And is this what they're planning on doing?
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clv101
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How much fuel will be available through transmutation in the 2013-2016 ish timescale?
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STG



Joined: 07 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

clv101 wrote:
How much fuel will be available through transmutation in the 2013-2016 ish timescale?


For transmutation it's not an amount of fuel which needs to be available, but waste! Also for a transmutation system, it isn't foreseen to be a breeder. And we'll have enough then! You can use Americium, Curium, bad grade Plutonium and all other stuff which can make a normal reactor unstable. And this stuff is the so called high-level waste. Combined with a subscritical fast spectrum you can destroy all of this stuff while maintaining a high neutron yield. Therefor you can use these exess neutrons to transmute for instance Technetium into ruthenium, which is a valuable resource!

This is as far as I know off, the long term plan as a large final disposal site will never get accepted.
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clv101
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So transmutation won't give us any fuel in the 2013-2016 ish timescale?
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STG



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 3:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No. if you transmute you use the exess neutrons in your reactor to transmute unstable fission products into stable ones. And as you gain stability you gain energy, which is extracted as heat. And you can do whatever you want with that heat. If you want to gasify or liquidize wood into combustion fuels...that's something you can do. The same goes for hydrogen production. But the most important thing is you can produce on a large scale stuff like ruthenium which is a very good catalyst. So this can lead to a lot of beneficial stuff in other sectors

But as you work subcritical you have to feed the core with neutrons with an accelerator, so your transmutation reactor is actually an energy amplifier.

If you want to produce nuclear fuels, breeder reactors are perfect in that point...
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kenneal - lagger
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 10:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

STG wrote:
If you want to produce nuclear fuels, breeder reactors are perfect in that point...


Show us a working, commercial, safe reactor that breeds and produces electricity then.
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STG



Joined: 07 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 11:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There doesn't exist any commercial breeder at the moment as their is no need for them, yet! But the design are there!

Although the French SFR Ph?nix can be seen as semi-commercial as it is generating electricity. But it is nowadays also used for Minor Actinide testing...
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Bandidoz
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

STG wrote:
You can use Americium, Curium, bad grade Plutonium and all other stuff which can make a normal reactor unstable. And this stuff is the so called high-level waste.

I thought that the majority of the waste disposal problem's volume is Intermediate-Level-Waste?
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