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Ted Rockwell
I'm an engineer and an author. I like to stir up spirited discussions on important issues. Socially, I like to comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable.
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Josh b commented that our lack of manufacturing capability is greatly exaggerated, and backed it up with data. Josh: Thanks VERY much for this important info. The nuclear industry (and probably others) has talked itself into stand-still. They complain that they don't have the manufacturing capabilities, so they can't built new plants. Yet, I read that companies that could be building new heavy machinery say they can't be sure there's a demand, so they're reluctant to commit the necessary large funds. The same is true of workers: The potential nuclear plant owners say they can't be sure they can get the needed workers, but the union leader involved, says "That's MY job. Tell me what you need, and by when, and I'll train the people. But you won't commit." And, of course, all this reluctance affects potential lenders, which drives up interest rates. I can cite more specifics, if needed. I'd like to see any more info anyone has on this subject. I'll play it up on my blog. But I urge you to get the word around. There are a lot of people who need to hear it. Thanks again, Ted Rockwell
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Mar 15, 2010
Re: [Learning About Energy ] russ submitted a comment to How to Avoid Haggling Russ: Ive been a practicing engineer since 1943. The Nuclear Energy Facts Report contains only facts; no opinions, conclusions or recommendations. It has an attachment which provides some relevant history, to provide background and context for the facts. You are welcome to provide additional facts or to suggest better facts (e.g. updated or otherwise better). The main value and purpose of the Report is not the data, but the format. If all the facts I present are replaced with better and additional facts, I will not consider the Report repudiated, but vindicated, because that is its purpose: to get people discussing energy in terms of the facts. Thanks for your input. Ted Rockwell NEW! More options for replying to comments via email: To reply privately to the commenter, click on the commenters email address below. To reply publicly on your blog, reply to this email. A new comment from russ was received on the post How to Avoid Haggling of the blog Learning About Energy . Comment: Are you in: 1) science or engineering? if so then facts only please 2) are you in politics? then BS only as everyone will consider what you say as that only anyway 3) Are you in PR? then full spin as it only counts if it works Commenter name: russ Commenter email:;body=%3E%20Are%20you%20in%3A%0A1)%20science%20or%20engineering%3F%20if%20so%20then%20facts%20only%20please%0A2)%20are%20you%20in%20politics%3F%20then%20BS%20on IP address: Authentication: None Enjoy!
Toggle Commented Mar 1, 2010 on How to Avoid Haggling at Learning About Energy
Download NuclearEnergyFactsReport-2009Dec6 Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2009 at My Blog
These are all valid comments, and point to what we should be working on, instead of the non-issues that seem to be in the news all the time. Rebuilding America's large-scale manufacturing capability is as important an issue as nuclear power, and we ought to devote more serious attention to it. B&W's proposed 125MW plants is one way around the problem, but one that has problems of its own. That should be thoroughly explored. I hate to see resources spent on so-called "green jobs" that don't lead to any useful product--like windmills or biofuel programs.
I agree that "sustainable" is a better word than "renewable." And it is quite properly applicable to nuclear power. The only naturally available fission fuel is U-235. And there is a fixed amount of it, but enough to operated for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. But, the unique thing about nuclear fission reactors is, that as we make electricity from U-235, that very process releases neutrons that convert non-fissionable U-238 to fissionable Pu-239 (not bomb-grade). Since there is 140 times more non-fissionable than fissionable uranium, and a similar process can be carried out with thorium (which is more abundant than uranium), the fact is we can make more fuel than we use, while producing electricity with fission. This process was demonstrated over 50 years ago, so there is nothing uncertain about it. Whereas, burning biofuels instead of returning them to nurture the soil raises serious questions when you get to the hundreds of millions of tons per year needed for just the U.S. If anyone wants more info on this, just send me your e-mail address and I'll send you a report on it. Since there is no hurry to get onto a fuel breeding cycle, and it is currently more expensive than the once-through process, it makes sense to develop the best chemical process.