The lack of general availability of 3 phase power in the USA - Page 11
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    Suggest the main reason nuclear cannot be the main electricity source has nothing to do with politics or ‘greenies’. Simply, a reactor cannot be turned on and off as quickly as daily varying loads demand. Tis fantastic for base load and I have no problem with more reactors being built for same but once you get beyond base it needs to be another source.

    If anyone doesn’t understand why, suggest reading up on Xenon poisoning and neutron absorption.

    L7

    NO large "base load" plant can be turned off quickly, or started up quickly. Nature of the beast. Marine are a different animal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by neilho View Post
    Hydro is not a load. Wrong again.



    And yes, a 100% renewable utility/grid is possible, because it's been done. It exists. How much more proof of possibility do you need?

    What I mean by "one size does not fit all" is that every utility has a mix of energy sources and loads that vary, often by 2:1 or more. Managing the loads and inputs is what grid operators do and there're a variety of power sources available, based on availability and geography. Different utilities have different solutions to their different problems. Applying general and broadbrush principles to specific problems may be helpful as guidance, but solutions to local problems are harder to come by.

    What do you propose we do about rising atmospheric CO2 levels? Apparently, from your posts, continue to drive ICE cars and sneer at wind and solar because many people charge their electric cars at night.

    Try to understand the financials behind the existence of so much solar and wind and you might lose some opinionatedness, if that's a word. It's wicked complicated and above both our pay grades.
    How silly......

    PUMPED HYDRO is a "load" at night when it is being pumped.

    A renewable grid with NO ties to fossil base load, and no use of natural hydro, nuclear etc? Only in very special places.

    What to do?

    Go to renewables as fast as can be done without destroying the grid. ICE cars are here to stay for a decade or more, and we should go renewable liquid fuel, not battery, which is a dead-end in the manner which it is being done now.

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    [QUOTE=APynckel;3790341].
    Comparing just cost of energy in terms of $ / unit power is too narrow sighted to use as the only measurement for validity. Cost is manipulated anyways through government subsidies "propping up" renewables. Nuclear is cheaper than renewables,

    No. Nuclear loses in terms of profits to other sources here. Period. THIS IS THE ONLY THING THAT MATTERS - how much money can they make NOW. Not pie in the sky sources, but NOW. Indian point closed because they could make more MONEY elsewhere. The subsidy happens when they sell the thing to the state and the taxpayer is on the hook for decommissioning. Spent fuel reprocessing? Again, give me your address please and I can have ALL THE SPENT FUEL EVER RUN THROUGH units 1, 2, and 3 sent to you. It's all right there on site. Subsidy: disposing of spent fuel. Don't go there (subsidies) when you discuss nuclear. You lose, big-time.

  4. #204
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    [QUOTE=jim rozen;3790429]
    Quote Originally Posted by APynckel View Post
    .
    Comparing just cost of energy in terms of $ / unit power is too narrow sighted to use as the only measurement for validity. Cost is manipulated anyways through government subsidies "propping up" renewables. Nuclear is cheaper than renewables,

    No. Nuclear loses in terms of profits to other sources here. Period. THIS IS THE ONLY THING THAT MATTERS - how much money can they make NOW. Not pie in the sky sources, but NOW. Indian point closed because they could make more MONEY elsewhere. The subsidy happens when they sell the thing to the state and the taxpayer is on the hook for decommissioning. Spent fuel reprocessing? Again, give me your address please and I can have ALL THE SPENT FUEL EVER RUN THROUGH units 1, 2, and 3 sent to you. It's all right there on site. Subsidy: disposing of spent fuel. Don't go there (subsidies) when you discuss nuclear. You lose, big-time.

    The problem is that 98% of the energy is STILL IN the "spent" fuel. IFR reactors (killed by Klinton) burn it down to nearly nothing.

    Nuclear, done right, is cheaper than no power.

    Canada has lots of them, and they just work. But then they do not have 15 self-interfering layers of unsafe "safety systems" the way US ones do. They have effective safety that has worked for decades.

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    [QUOTE=JST;3790474]
    Quote Originally Posted by jim rozen View Post
    IFR reactors (killed by Klinton) burn it down to nearly nothing.
    ....
    He wasn't in a condition to do *anything* about Indian point when it was first built. =)

    The decision to avoid breeder reactors for commercial eletricity generation was an absolute from the git-go and has been totally non-negotiable in the US. There's no need to bring up magic unicorns in a discussion about how to make money selling electric power. The process always was and always will be market-driven.

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    [QUOTE=jim rozen;3790528]
    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post

    He wasn't in a condition to do *anything* about Indian point when it was first built. =)

    The decision to avoid breeder reactors for commercial eletricity generation was an absolute from the git-go and has been totally non-negotiable in the US. There's no need to bring up magic unicorns in a discussion about how to make money selling electric power. The process always was and always will be market-driven.
    The IFR is not a breeder that makes usable bomb material. There are idiot politicians who do not understand that, and do not want to. Some are libercrats, and some are "Becausewecans".

    Breeders, reprocessing, and use of thorium are all things which are "unthinkable". So we use 2% of the uranium, and then have to find places to put the "wasted" material by the hundred ton lot.

    Those folks seem to want to freeze in the dark.

    It is so idiotic as to nearly require some people to be put up against the wall, or hung.

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    [QUOTE=JST;3790474]
    Quote Originally Posted by jim rozen View Post


    The problem is that 98% of the energy is STILL IN the "spent" fuel. IFR reactors (killed by Klinton) burn it down to nearly nothing.

    Canada has lots of them, and they just work. But then they do not have 15 self-interfering layers of unsafe "safety systems" the way US ones do. They have effective safety that has worked for decades.
    Sometimes misunderstood, Canada’s power reactors are different than any of the US’s. The CANDU design is a low pressure system, deuterium as a moderator (not regular high pressure water) and horizontal rod candalaria arrangement, not vertical. Normally burning unenriched uranium., not the approx 3% U235 most others need. Can also burn mix of thorium/uranium or plutonium/uranium. Unlike most US reactors they don’t need to be shut down to refuel.

    From what I understand, the CANDU reactors have their share of safety systems, as they should, and do have a good safety record. They have the disadvantage of making a small amount of tritium and plutonium as byproducts of the cycle (used for ‘other’ purposes by an Indian pseudo CANDU reactor in the 1970’s and 80’s), but are not as politically difficult as breeders.

    Don’t know enough to know if newer US designs are so much more thermally efficient that they outstrip the advantages CANDU reactors have or if it’s just nationalism.

    L7

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    Default The lack of general availability of 3 phase power in the USA

    Nuclear power will definitely have to be a big part of the energy pie for the future of man.

    Although any nuclear plant is just like a flying airplane: on any given day, a circumstance of events involving mechanical failure, human error, and natural disaster (earthquake, Tsunami, hurricane, etc) can lead to a catastrophic failure.

    Three Mile Island (we got real lucky on that one!)….Chernobyl….Fukushima…

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    Quote Originally Posted by cnctoolcat View Post
    Nuclear power will definitely have to be a big part of the energy pie for the future of man.

    Although any nuclear plant is just like a flying airplane: on any given day, a circumstance of events involving mechanical failure, human error, and natural disaster (earthquake, Tsunami, hurricane, etc) can lead to a catastrophic failure.

    Three Mile Island (we got real lucky on that one!)….Chernobyl….Fukushima…
    Chernobyl was a bad design and a really stupid test being done.

    Fukushima had nothing to do with the reactors.... it was stupid placement of the backup generators that turned the situation to a huge problem during a tsunami.

    TMI was a LOCA that was allowed to get farther than is should have by human operators, and IIRC was precipitated by a double failure of complex safety systems. It's the most legitimate failure of the three, and ended up the least damaging.

    There are designs of reactor that essentially automatically shut down when there are problems, and which do not need layers and layers of interactive safety systems. They could safely sit unpowered for a long time, and do not require power to enter that state, as I understand it.

    We chose to not use that type for various reasons. The result is that nuclear is another "unthinkable" option.

    Oddly, there are a lot of even the stupidly complex reactors producing power all day long with no problem.

    Coal and gas are a problem. Nuclear is "obviously off the table". Hydro power is "an ecological problem" due to fish etc. Wind turbines "kill billions of birds" if you are a greenie, and "produce mysterious harmful vibrations" if you are a coal proponent. Solar "is highly polluting" if you are a greenie, and "a hoax, and panels last only a few years" if you are a "coalie".

    When you get through satisfying everyone, you don't have much left that is findable where it is needed. I am not sure what the eco-objection is to geothermal, but I am sure there is one.

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    [QUOTE=lucky7;3790590]
    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post
    ...
    Don’t know enough to know if newer US designs are so much more thermally efficient that they outstrip the advantages CANDU reactors have or if it’s just nationalism.
    L7
    Possibli the single biggest problem with implemnting commercial nuclear power-based electricity generation in the US is this: each plant is entirely different and uniqe by itself. Somebody please explain why one design cannot be decided on and used for all installations. A quiz; what were the last two nuclear powrer plants comissioned in the US?

    I believe the annswer is: Palo Verdes one and two.

    One of those had destructive flutter happening in the primary cooling loop. These were nominally the same plants, remember. They sent a teathered camera into the primary loop to see what was going on. The teather broke. They never found the camera.

    Imagine if every car on the road today was built by a different company. One-off. That's one reason why nuclear power in the US has had a tough run. My understanding is that in France for example, all the reactors are built to the same plans. Find an unanticipated issue in one, fix it in all of them, before it breaks.

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    [QUOTE=JST;3790542]
    Quote Originally Posted by jim rozen View Post

    The IFR is not a breeder that makes usable bomb material. There are idiot politicians who do not understand that.
    Hmmmm. Confused by that comment. Correct me if I’m wrong as it’s been years since my university physics classes, but by definition an IFR is a breeder. It just depends on how the fuel is presented/clad whether an IFR is being run as a breeder or burner. The whole point of an IFR is to make and use up fertile isotopes and wind up with minimal actinides. And yes, plutonium in refinable quantities is made during this process. Theory is that as all refining is onsite and too toxic/fatal to move so that there’s no risk of diversion.

    Getting down in the weeds and away from OP’s thread start, so back to concerns re IFR in commercial use- liquid sodium safety and need to start with 20% enriched uranium? Don’t know enough to know how difficult these are? Maybe one should ask the Russian Navy?

    L7

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    I've been deliberately staying away from military nuclear power generation. That is so different than commercial it's nearly a different animal. For one, you don't need to make money running those. The control over their operation, and the control over the training for the operators, so very different.

    Nobody says "hey, we can make more money running an aircrafter carrier on photovoltaics." Aircraft carriers don't MAKE money they SPEND money. That's not a bug, it's a feature.

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    I've been doing a bit of light reading on the subject, and I rather like the pebble bed concept.

    Also, I would like to see the direct conversion method advanced, no steam, no turbines, etc.
    Last edited by digger doug; 08-02-2021 at 07:37 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jim rozen View Post
    I've been deliberately staying away from military nuclear power generation. That is so different than commercial it's nearly a different animal.
    Fair point. My reason for mentioning is just that I think they have the most experience with that concept. And a few screwups.

    L7

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    [QUOTE=lucky7;3790654]
    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post

    Hmmmm. Confused by that comment. Correct me if I’m wrong as it’s been years since my university physics classes, but by definition an IFR is a breeder. It just depends on how the fuel is presented/clad whether an IFR is being run as a breeder or burner. The whole point of an IFR is to make and use up fertile isotopes and wind up with minimal actinides. And yes, plutonium in refinable quantities is made during this process. Theory is that as all refining is onsite and too toxic/fatal to move so that there’s no risk of diversion.

    Getting down in the weeds and away from OP’s thread start, so back to concerns re IFR in commercial use- liquid sodium safety and need to start with 20% enriched uranium? Don’t know enough to know how difficult these are? Maybe one should ask the Russian Navy?

    L7

    Actually, the refining only has to be rudimentary, in no way enough to build a bomb from the material, other than a "dirty" chemical bomb, which you can do with a lot of things.

    That's the point, it burns the stuff that would have to be carefully cleaned from regular reactor fuel.

    For the IFR, if it is radioactive, it "burns", you need only clean out most of the stuff that has burned down to non-radioactive, or close to it.

    Nearly no "waste", and nothing useful in terms of purified fission bomb material.

    That's what was covered up when killing it..... Labeled it a "breeder", and "everyone knows" those are bad.... even though some form of breeder is the ONLY way to extend the uranium reactor for more than a few more decades. The U235 is just not that common.

    Thorium, plus the IFR, goes for centuries.

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    I think we may be off topic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SomeoneSomewhere View Post
    I think we may be off topic.

    We are, but the original subject has been answered nicely, so I'm letting it wander wherever it goes.

    Stuff like that happens. If it does not get nasty and personal, I'm good with it wandering.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post
    How silly......

    PUMPED HYDRO is a "load" at night when it is being pumped.....
    Yeah, now facts are "silly".

    You misunderstood. Hydro runs at night, can and does act as a base supply in many places.

    ...A renewable grid with NO ties to fossil base load, and no use of natural hydro, nuclear etc? Only in very special places....
    Again, hydro power is renewable, no ties to coal, NG or nuclear required. Every utility is a special case. It's doable, it has been done, the template is there, the technology is there, the only thing this country needs to do it is will, determination and capital.

    ....What to do?

    Go to renewables as fast as can be done without destroying the grid. ICE cars are here to stay for a decade or more, and we should go renewable liquid fuel, not battery, which is a dead-end in the manner which it is being done now.
    Glad to hear you're in favor of RE. Agreed that ICE is here for quite a lot longer. Any suggestions on which renewable liquid fuel/fuels to fund for further development?

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    Quote Originally Posted by neilho View Post
    Yeah, now facts are "silly".

    You misunderstood. Hydro runs at night, can and does act as a base supply in many places.
    I am referring to 'pumped hydro", a storage means. It is used for peaking in the daytime, and is a load at night.

    Hydro at the river dam runs all the time, but, unfortunately, as I mentioned, it is not available everywhere, so it is not an available source for everyone. Large areas are rather lacking in available hydro in anywhere near the kVA needed now, let alone with lumpty-bump thousand many kW car chargers plugged-in.

    Sending it from the areas it is available, to the areas that need it is another issue, incurring extra losses. Pretty much all the available sources are booked up pretty solidly now.

    On top of that, the way-out greenies hate it, due to real or supposed fish problems. See if you can get a new hydro power dam put in.... You are probably lucky just to keep ones that exist in service and authorized. Damming rivers is seriously out of style.

    And, out west, we have a certain small problem with one of the largest hydro installs in the US. No water. So it is not nearly as reliable now as it has been in the past.

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    The context seemed to be when there is a significant build-out of solar and wind, which don't work well at night (wind less so). So pumped storage would be expected to refill during the dip in the 'duck curve', around midday.

    You would need storage to return power during the evening peak and overnight.

    This would largely reverse the current pricing schedule and likely significantly change some industrial and commercial practices that are built on cheap power at night. For example, a small number of facilities run chillers to cool glycol tanks at night, then use those heatsinks to cool buildings during the day. I suspect that there's a lot of other loads run at night due to lower pricing that would not be if pricing was reversed.


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