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#303649 - 11/01/17 08:17 PM SMR (Small modular reactor)
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1797
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
SMR's are starting to get built. There were a couple of them that were supposed to be built and tested at the tennessee valley authority during the Obama administration. I googled it "tennessee smr tests" and got a pile of responses. Here are a couple of them:
https://analysis.nuclearenergyinsider.co...ociators-mexico
https://www.energy.gov/ne/smr-lts-site-permitting-and-licensing-projects

China is stepping up, as is canada, to build factories for this stuff:
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china...e-idUSKBN1950HT
http://www.powermag.com/china-starts-building-smr-based-floating-nuclear-plant/

Now, what these things are. These are nuclear reactors (sometimes just generators running off of temperature differences) which are slightly bigger than an 8 seat hottub which can be buried in th earth and replaced every 20/30 years. They cannot melt down, they cannot blow up, they are, in other words completely safe. An interesting aside is that there are actually designs which would use existing nuclear waste to power up with. They can built in factories and delivered to site by truck, train, etc. One can, in theory, produce enough power to suply from 20,000 to 30,000 houses. They can also be ganged up to supply more power if needed.
On top of all of that they produce clean power and are environmentally clean.

These can, in other words, supply cleaner, more reliable power than either sun or wind without killing birds, etc.

I also find it interesting that China is getting into it bigtime (using, in at least 1 case, an American design). Germany too is testing them (even though they are shutting down their existing nuke plants as they are, rightly, considered to be dangerous). So, basically, whilst the rest of the world is seriously starting to consider the things, we, inspite of the fact that in theory we are already testing them, we are also paranoid about anything with "NUKE" in its description. Hopefully we can get over that and get going on this stuff as well.

http://www.world-nuclear.org/information...r-reactors.aspx
http://www.nuscalepower.com/our-technology/test-programs/international-test-programs
http://www.digitaljournal.com/tech-and-s.../article/499525
https://www.sciencealert.com/miniature-modular-nuclear-power-plants-are-being-implemented-in-the-us
https://www.asme.org/engineering-topics/...s-gain-traction
https://www.energy.gov/ne/nuclear-reactor-technologies/small-modular-nuclear-reactors



Edited by jgw (11/01/17 08:21 PM)

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#303654 - 11/02/17 04:56 AM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
Jeffery J. Haas Online   sick


Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 12907
Loc: Whittier, California
I believe Toshiba is also in this game as well.
_________________________
"The Left ones think I'm Right, the Right ones think I'm wrong."

----Leon Russell - "Magic Mirror"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-H1iQ5Y6Eg

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#303660 - 11/02/17 09:34 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: Jeffery J. Haas]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 13868
Loc: Florida
Nuclear power, as we know it, is dead dead dead. Renewables are outstripping every other form of electrical generation in costs and returns on investment.
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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#303665 - 11/02/17 11:59 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1797
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
I sense that renewables are the desired. Talk, sometime, about the number of dead birds around the windmills and add that one into the mix. I know, its generally accepted that nuclear is dead but the only reason for that one is perception and has little to do with fact. SMR's are, in the long run, much cheaper than renewables. In addition to that they are VERY safe and, better yet, can use our existing supply of nuclear waste to power them instead of burying that stuff in the earth to create yet bigger problems.

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#303667 - 11/03/17 01:08 AM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 13868
Loc: Florida
Wind turbines kill around 300,000 birds annually, house cats around 3,000,000,000
Quote:
Wind turbines kill between 214,000 and 368,000 birds annually — a small fraction compared with the estimated 6.8 million fatalities from collisions with cell and radio towers and the 1.4 billion to 3.7 billion deaths from cats
Source
And the there's bird deaths from oil spills and such....and fish deaths and fisheries collapsing etc. etc.
What will the ultimate price of Fukushima be?
Sing me the praises of nuclear energy all you want, there are better ways to get electricity than nuclear.
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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#303668 - 11/03/17 03:11 AM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: Greger]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7285
Loc: North San Diego County
Quote:
Nuclear power, as we know it, is dead dead dead.


You gotta wait a while for a hydrogen fusion economy. Then nuclear power will be cheap, cheap, cheap. So cheap we can probably use excess generating capacity to pull carbon right out of the air and bury it. Basically, reverse coal mining.

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#303673 - 11/03/17 12:48 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: pondering_it_all]
logtroll Offline
veteran

Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8709
Loc: New Mexico (not old Mexico)
Originally Posted By: pondering_it_all
So cheap we can probably use excess generating capacity to pull carbon right out of the air and bury it. Basically, reverse coal mining.

That technology already exists, powered by 'cold' fusion. And it's not cheap, it is economically positive.

It's called regenerative farming - the fundamentals being discontinuing the use of plowing and chemical fertilizers.

Following proper protocols, farming can use less energy, make the soil more productive, require less water, and support whole ecosystems instead of sterile monocrops. Plants can mine the atmosphere for carbon and store it in the soil where it is put to very beneficial use - 10 - 20 tons per hectare per year, in fact.

Why do humans resist the easy and practical things?
_________________________
"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303674 - 11/03/17 12:51 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: logtroll]
logtroll Offline
veteran

Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8709
Loc: New Mexico (not old Mexico)
_________________________
"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303685 - 11/03/17 08:35 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7285
Loc: North San Diego County
All good ideas for a variety of reasons. I would love to see vast herds of buffalo roaming parts of the Mid-West again, but too slow and it has limited potential. It doesn't affect all the coal and oil we burned, but rather just makes agriculture carbon-neutral. Then there's always the question of where you get the energy to do all that organic farming? Burn oil? Go Amish and use horses and hand labor?

I think it would be possible if we have lots of nearly free energy, like hydrogen fusion pulling carbon out of the atmosphere and making ethanol to run the farm machinery.

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#303692 - 11/04/17 01:04 AM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: pondering_it_all]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 13868
Loc: Florida
Quote:
You gotta wait a while for a hydrogen fusion economy.
I've been waiting a lifetime already for the promises of nuclear energy to become a reality. While we get closer every year to a nuclear apocalypse we don't seem to get much closer to any safe, economical, and peaceful uses for it. Hydrogen fusion remains a pipe dream while renewables have stepped up to the plate and become the future of energy.
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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#303695 - 11/04/17 01:57 AM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7285
Loc: North San Diego County
Sure, I've got tons of cheap solar panels. They have a supposed life of 25 years. Maybe we'll have cheap fusion when that 25 years is up. Maybe I'll be used up before they are.

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#303706 - 11/04/17 12:33 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: pondering_it_all]
logtroll Offline
veteran

Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8709
Loc: New Mexico (not old Mexico)
Originally Posted By: pondering_it_all
I would love to see vast herds of buffalo roaming parts of the Mid-West again, but too slow and it has limited potential. It doesn't affect all the coal and oil we burned, but rather just makes agriculture carbon-neutral. Then there's always the question of where you get the energy to do all that organic farming

First of all, I am not making any arguments against better ways to make electricity and other forms of energy. I am advocating specifically to not bypass the myriad of means already at our disposal to use less energy, to NEED less energy, and to change our culture to be better at integrating systems of better ways to live, which will do more in the aggregate to solve system human-caused problems than focusing on any one sexy technofix for maintaining our current squanderous lifestyles.

Back to pulling carbon out of the air, I wasn't referring to vast herds of buffalo. Here's a pinch from a rather long and geeky paper:
Quote:
ISAR’s research indicates that farmers growing these crops under carbon trading protocols could grow biomass representing up to 50 tons of net sequestered CO2 per acre (A) of cropland. These crops would produce revenues of approximately $50- $150/acres, thereby insuring grower’s adoption and enabling a smooth transition from conventional to IP agricultural practices. IP has the capability to absorb current total anthropogenic CO2 emissions (30,398 million tons CO2/year) through adoption of year- round IP production on 17% of the world’s arable cropland or through the growth and incorporation of ~4 tons/acre dry biomass on cropland worldwide.
The IP approach does not require high-tech equipment or have high costs for implementation. IP can be practiced in any country by farmers of any ability creating economic opportunities and bene ts worldwide, including third world countries. With the implementation of IP, valuable resources of energy, capital and captured CO2 would not be pumped into a “hole-in-the-ground” or to extreme ocean depths, but will be captured and incorporated into soils to improve the quantity, quality and health of farmland worldwide, while increasing crop yield and food quality.

This methodology does not require waiting for some technology to mature, it just needs people to acknowledge and adopt it.

Using this system would require significantly less use of tractors and they could be powered by electric motors using energy generated from a range of sources, possibly even including SMRs.


Edited by logtroll (11/04/17 12:35 PM)
Edit Reason: add link
_________________________
"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303714 - 11/04/17 08:41 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7285
Loc: North San Diego County
I think IP is a fine idea but putting more carbon in the soil only has a one time benefit. Once you get the carbon in the farmland I don't think you can put a lot more in there. Natural processes in the soil make organic material decay and release CO2 back into the atmosphere. So you can offset all the anthropogenic CO2 for a few years and then you have great soil on every arable hectare and get no such additional carbon sequestration.

Farmland is a compartment, from the ecological viewpoint. You can put carbon in it but it can only hold so much and it comes out rather easily and inevitably. The time scale is pretty short: Just a few years.

The ocean is a much larger compartment and the time scale is eons, because CO2 gets turned into limestone and is in there for geological time. Putting it in faster than limestone formation makes the ocean more acid so it has it's limits if you want any sea life.

Burying carbon has no such limitations or quick recycling. You are just duplicating very long time-scale natural processes like oil and coal production.

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#303716 - 11/04/17 09:07 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: pondering_it_all]
logtroll Offline
veteran

Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8709
Loc: New Mexico (not old Mexico)
Originally Posted By: pondering_it_all
Once you get the carbon in the farmland I don't think you can put a lot more in there. Natural processes in the soil make organic material decay and release CO2 back into the atmosphere. So you can offset all the anthropogenic CO2 for a few years and then you have great soil on every arable hectare and get no such additional carbon sequestration.

That's true for labile carbon but not for recalcitrant carbon. There probably is a limit to how much recalcitrant carbon can go back into the soil, but the amount is humongous and, according to the calculations of many, enough to "save" us from what we have done so far. But we do have to stop living like total morons and change our ways, critical as one strategic vector.

As said before, IP is something that can be done now, at positive economic levels, with multiple positive co-benefits besides atmospheric carbon reduction.

I encounter this all the time - resistance to immediately implementing conserving strategies that are 'shovel ready', usually on the argument that we will need more energy eventually, or that they aren't 'big' enough. I don't get it.
_________________________
"You can't fix a problem until you understand what the problem is." Logtroll

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#303720 - 11/05/17 06:09 AM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7285
Loc: North San Diego County
You misunderstand me. I agree, we should do IP. But we need to do everything just to have enough energy. That includes natural gas, wind, solar, geothermal, fission reactors: Basically all energy source we have with the possible exception of coal. (Not that it is too CO2 generating and dirty, but because it releases so much radiation into the atmosphere.)

If we don't do it all, billions of people starve to death. (We also need to get drastic about population control.) All of this is necessary to keep us going without massive die-offs until fusion is ready.

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#303827 - 11/09/17 09:42 PM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1797
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
We gotta have faith in our military. Trump has put them in charge and they have told him, apparently, that everything is winnable so, perhaps, they can get us into a war that will kill off our overpopulation?

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#303837 - 11/10/17 09:16 AM Re: SMR (Small modular reactor) [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7285
Loc: North San Diego County
We can win, if you call it that. Out of the entire human race probably only a few hundred people would survive and those would be Americans in deep shelters with years supply of food and water. But I bet there are very few women in those underground facilities! (Mormons have the food but I don't think they have the radiation-proof shelters. Or several years worth of water!)

It's an echo of Dr. Strangelove, but maybe the best chance of survival is to gather up all the young women you can and get them into the shelters. In about 10 years, they could move back to the surface in select areas with little radiation. Then they have to have a strict breeding program so each couple can have only one child, and women are encouraged (required?) to have multiple children by different fathers.

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