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Nuclear Fusion the Solution to Climate Change?


iacas
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Amid an escalating crisis, the power source offers a dream—or a pipe dream—of limitless clean energy.

A good article, worth your time if you're at all interested in science. We could power the earth for 30 million years if we could figure this out.

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"If you converted a baseball into pure energy, you could power New York City for about two weeks."

That is a very interesting article.   Thanks for sharing.   One could only imagine the possibilities!

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A good baby step would be to renormalize our relationship with fission nuclear energy. A lot has changed since Three Mile Island.

The comment about smaller (reactors) possibly being better than bigger resonated with me too. With all this vehicle electrification happening we need a more resilient, redundant grid as well.

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3 hours ago, Chris Brooks said:

A good baby step would be to renormalize our relationship with fission nuclear energy. A lot has changed since Three Mile Island.

As I understand it, the biggest environmental concern with nuclear fission isn’t the possibility of meltdown, it’s the damage it does to the surrounding area due to cooling the reactors.

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3 hours ago, Chris Brooks said:

A good baby step would be to renormalize our relationship with fission nuclear energy. A lot has changed since Three Mile Island.

Possibly, but fission and fusion are quite different besides being literal opposites.

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9 hours ago, Chris Brooks said:

A good baby step would be to renormalize our relationship with fission nuclear energy. A lot has changed since Three Mile Island.

I think Chernobyl had a bigger impact on the negative PR than Three Mile Island. Even though Chernobyl was built almost nothing like the way it's done here in the US, those that were Anti-Nuclear Power were able to point to it and say "See, I told you so!" 

5 hours ago, billchao said:

As I understand it, the biggest environmental concern with nuclear fission isn’t the possibility of meltdown, it’s the damage it does to the surrounding area due to cooling the reactors.

I remember as a grade school kid in the 70's, we got a chance to visit The Zion Nuclear Plant in Illinois. Oddly, at that time they talked about how "great" the cooling towers were for the environment. The water used to cool the towers is separate from the actual reaction and the wild life benefited from the warmer water being put back into Lake Michigan. 

I'm sure we've learned a lot since then. Warmer water probably doesn't always equal "better for the wildlife".

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6 hours ago, iacas said:

Possibly, but fission and fusion are quite different besides being literal opposites.

As an engineer I know that (and I know that you know that) but the public groups fusion and fission into the same category. We’ve been decommissioning and de-investing in that category since the 1980s. It really is primarily a policy issue these days. 

My son’s father-in-law was an initial reviewer and helped fund the book under discussion in this article:

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Nuclear is expensive, but it should be cheap

 

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13 hours ago, Chris Brooks said:

A lot has changed since Three Mile Island.

3-mile island was overblown. 

Its sad that we do not have more nuclear power as our baseline power source. 

With how our energy markets work, and with how predominant natural gas has become, even if we had nuclear power the profit margins would be slim if natural gas still came on like it did over the past 15-20 years.  We still had nuclear power plants running from the 1970's. They are being shut down because they can not compete with natural gas right now. The only option for nuclear, is to require (by law) that a certain % of the usage in the regulator region (where I live it's PJM) must come from nuclear power. This would be a regulated rate of return that would cover maintenance, and some sort of profit level for the generation company. The remaining load would then be bid on a deregulated market. This is were, if you live in a state like Ohio, you can go and change your energy or gas (heating) supplier and lock in lower rates. 

The issue right now with Natural Gas as the primary, and really could be said, only fuel source for many people, is there is no redundancy in generation. You have Texas, where they didn't weatherize their gas pipelines (makes sense based on probability of the storm they got), you have the fuel lines to the generation plants freeze up. You have way to many people out of power than there should be if we had a diversified fuel source for our power generation. 

Off my energy generation platform 😛 

Good article about Fusion. I hope to see the day it becomes reality. 

Maybe we need to rebrand it off the word Nuclear. Maybe just starting calling it Fusion. Or Matter Fusion Energy Source. If Nuclear is a hot word 😉

 

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Fusion power was a big topic went I was in college in 78-82. We had a good program going in the US, but the Federal government switched funding focus from fusion research. It’s sad because it would solve a ton of issues. 

My problem with nuclear fission plants is not the science or engineering, it’s the accountants. Too many issues arise because of short cuts sadly.

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29 minutes ago, boogielicious said:

Fusion power was a big topic went I was in college in 78-82. We had a good program going in the US, but the Federal government switched funding focus from fusion research. It’s sad because it would solve a ton of issues. 

My problem with nuclear fission plants is not the science or engineering, it’s the accountants. Too many issues arise because of short cuts sadly.

But,  ‘The China Syndrome’

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