The nuclear waste meant for Yucca
would destine Nevada the sucka
But with Thorium we rid
us of waste that is hid
No need for that waste to be trucka!
Where is the storage for spent nuclear fuel and other nuclear waste now? Look at the map, it is scary.
And this is just the U.S. installations!
Many years ago I studied Engineering at Chalmers’ University in Sweden and I thought I would become a nuclear engineer. Sweden had at that time a peaceful heavy water based nuclear power program together with Canada and India. The advantage with heavy water as moderator is that it can use natural, un-enriched Uranium. One of the end products is of course Plutonium 239, the preferred material to make nuclear bombs, but it could also use Thorium, and the end product is then Plutonium 238, used in space exploration, and we were dreaming big. One of the advantages of Thorium as fuel is that it produces about 0,01% of trans-Uranium waste compared to Uranium as fuel. About that time the U.S. proposed we should abandon the heavy water program and switch to light water enriched Uranium based nuclear power. They would sell the enriched Uranium, and reprocess the spent fuel at cost. They also had the ideal final resting place for the radioactive waste products in Nevada. This was an offer the Swedish government could not refuse. This was in the 1960’s! India on the other hand did refuse, and they eventually got the nuclear bomb. In disgust I switched my attention back to control engineering.
What did President Trump mean with innovative approaches?
This is where Thorium comes in!
Here is a list of
We need badly to develop and build Thorium based molten salt fast breeder nuclear reactors to secure our energy needs in the future. Lest anyone should be threatened by the words fast breeder, it simply means it uses fast neutrons instead of thermal neutrons, and breeder means it produces more fissible material than it consumes, in the case of Thorium the ratio is about 1.05.
5. Radioactive waste from an LFTR decays down to background radiation in 300 years compared to a million years for U-235 based reactors.
10. Molten Salt Nuclear Reactors have a very high negative temperature coefficient leading to a safe and stable control.
13. Thorium Nuclear Power generators scale beautifully from small portable generators to full size power plants.
Look carefully at note 17. We can do better than Russia!