OT- Portable Nuclear Power Plants



And the waste from the use of hundreds of shipboard nuclear reactors over the last 50+ years... (Yep, it really has been that long)
Vaughn
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azotic wrote:

Yes and when you get that figured out maybe we can do the same for steam power and/or hydrogen for use in autos. :-) ...lew...
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wrote:

Agreed seems other parts of the world do not fear nuclear power, did a little googling for fun and was very surprised to find forgien investors are trying to buy several US uranium mines. From what i learned i see that other countries plan on increasing thier nuclear power generation and others wtih no current nuclear power plant plan on building new nuclear power plants. Looks like investors see an increasing need for nuclear fuel in the near future. The problem here in the US is the negative image created by people who dont know what thier talking about duped the public into unjustified fear of nuclear power. Until these fears are overcome i believe the rest of the world will continue to build nuclear power plants and we will be stuck paying high prices for electric power generated by fossil fuels. Keep us appraised of how this all works out in canada.
Best Regards Tom.
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That is not true. Nuclear reactors can modulate their output perfectly well. In fact, a pressurized water reactor (that is the most common type of reactor) changes power nearly automatically to match demand because of its negative temperature coefficient .
(Vaughn gets a far away look in his eyes) Back in my nuclear reactor operator days, I could watch power vary from (say) 10% to well over 50% and not touch a single control. Larger power changes just took a little bump of the control rod position.
Commercial nuclear reactors are operated near their full power capacity for economic reasons, not because they are not capable of being modulated.
Vaughn
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On Tue, 09 Oct 2007 22:38:15 GMT, "Vaughn Simon"

Hey Vaughn,
Hmmmmm....so, I wonder...why we still have coal-fired plants, and why the latest plants built are coal-fired too? Just cost? Just time (to build)? Just disposal problems? Just politics? Or do you see an actual purpose for the coal-fired units, at least at present?
And just a question about your statement...
..."I could watch power vary from (say) 10% to well over 50%"
Are you saying a variation of 10% to 50% of full power, or 10 to 50% of say 80% baseline, was automatically controlled through NTC? Or would the cooling towers see a fair load shed? And would this power generation be at the suggested 1500 possible changes per shift? What am I, and apparently all the people that are debating this here in Ontario, missing?
Interesting stuff!!
Brian Lawson, Bothwell, Ontario.
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Brian Lawson wrote:

Here is Texas we just narrowly averted a coal power disaster as the politicos seem to have been (temporarily) bought by the coal industry.
AIUI, they suddenly changes their considered opinion when the voters themselves (pesky things that they are) voiced a loud contrary opinion. Some foolishness about clean air, if you can believe that...
The squeemish should not watch Law and Sausages being created.
Richard
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On Tue, 09 Oct 2007 22:38:15 GMT, "Vaughn Simon"

Vaughn, Ontario Hydro uses the Candu reactors which are heavy water reactors, would this make a difference in thier ability to quickly handle grid load demands?
H.
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You would need to ask someone who knows for sure, but I doubt it. (I am an ex-nuclear reactor operator, not a nuclear scientist)
The principle works like this: For a reactor to work, there must be some substance to slow the neutrons down so that some of them can successfully mate with an atom of uranium. This substance is called a moderator. Water makes a great moderator (heavy water makes an even better moderator). When you heat up water(even heavy water), it gets less dense and then it does not moderate as well. When you cool down water, it gets denser, moderates better, you get more fission reactions, which generates more power, which heats up the reactor, which heats up the water, which reduces its density, which tends to reduce the reactor's power.
So let's review: When you place more load on the reactor, you are drawing heat from it, which tends to cool it down, which tends to make it produce more power. This is the famous "negative power coeficient" that makes pressurized water reactors tend to automatically produce exactly the proper amont of energy.
There are design factors that can give a reactor more or less temperature coeficient, but the main reason that nuclear reactors are ran nearly "flat out" is because of the cheap fuel, not because it is difficult to control their output power. You would not want to live within 100 miles of a nuclear reactor that was difficult to control.
Vaughn
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On Thu, 11 Oct 2007 00:42:00 GMT, "Vaughn Simon"

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.............
Good Point-
H. :)
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Hey Rich,
Not sure what you mean, but he "works" for Ontario Power Corporation. They operate all the plants, both nuclear and conventional fuel-fired. That's not to say that he isn't biased by where his home is, of course. But I doubt he would be slinging too much BS. He'd be more likely to lose his job doing that, than losing it by losing the plant.
Take care.
Brian Lawson, Bothwell, Ontario.
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wrote:

My thoughts upon reading the article are that it might be a good idea to have a few of these floating nuclear power plants built and ready to use should we ever need them in an emergency.
Best Regards Tom.
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On Wed, 10 Oct 2007 01:17:06 -0700, with neither quill nor qualm,

Like for the day after the Big One hits California and everything east of the San Andreas Fault slips into the Atlantic? Yeah, the quake might have scrammed San Onofre...
I much prefer the small amount of nuke waste to the crap the coal fired plants put into the atmosphere. Hell, if we switched our power production mainly to nukes, we even could have met the Kyoto Protocol requirements with no other changes (not that the protocol would have done any good whatsoever.)
-- Ultimately, the only power to which man should aspire is that which he exercises over himself. -- Elie Wiesel
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West Hollywood would finally Hook Up with San Fran...and the airlines catering to gay weekends would go broke.
Gunner
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I don't know if is a Russian concept or not, but it certainly is not a new concept. Some were built back in the 1950's for the US military. One was used in Antarctica for some ten years. (See below) As I recall, a prototype of one of these reactors had a grisly accident that left an operator skewered to the roof of the containment building by a control rod.
Vaughn
(From: http://www.almc.army.mil/alog/issues/SepOct01/MS684.htm ) "The Army Nuclear Power Program" "The military considered the possibility of using nuclear power plants to generate alternate fuels almost 50 years ago and actively supported nuclear energy as a means of reducing logistics requirements for coal, oil, and gasoline. However, political, technical, and military considerations forced the closure of the program before a prototype could be built."
"The Army Corps of Engineers ran a Nuclear Power Program from 1952 until 1979, primarily to supply electric power in remote areas. Stationary nuclear reactors built at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, and Fort Greeley, Alaska, were operated successfully from the late 1950s to the early 1970s. Portable nuclear reactors also were operated at Sundance, Wyoming; Camp Century, Greenland; and McMurdo Sound in Antarctica. These small nuclear power plants provided electricity for remote military facilities and could be operated efficiently for long periods without refueling. The Army also considered using nuclear power plants overseas to provide uninterrupted power and defense support in the event that U.S. installations were cut off from their normal logistics supply lines. "
"In November 1963, an Army study submitted to the Department of Defense (DOD) proposed employing a military compact reactor (MCR) as the power source for a nuclear-powered energy depot, which was being considered as a means of producing synthetic fuels in a combat zone for use in military vehicles. MCR studies, which had begun in 1955, grew out of the Transportation Corps' interest in using nuclear energy to power heavy, overland cargo haulers in remote areas. These studies investigated various reactor and vehicle concepts, including a small liquid-metal-cooled reactor, but ultimately the concept proved impractical. "
Solves the problem of NIMBY, out of sight

http://www.upi.com/Energy/Briefing/2007/04/16/interest_in_russian_floating_nuclear_plant /
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History channel had a segment about that very incident, they interviewed some of survivors and rescue workers. As i recall it was a stuck control rod that caused the accident. They did show fotage of the plant after the accident and described finding a missing worker impailed by a control rod that blew out of the reactor and went threw the roof of the reactor building.
Best Regards Tom.
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