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 Post subject: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:52 pm 
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There is a madness abroad which is both unwholesome and disturbing, pointing to a society in decay, that has gone beyond the point of no return. No other explanation can be found for the torrent of glib, technically illiterate outpourings from the serried ranks of media "environmental" reporters, gushing and gooing about the prospect of the Severn barrage lurching forwards into another realm of unreality.

View full article here

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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:57 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2005 8:47 pm
Posts: 4434
When the man at the top is insane, what hope do we have.

Though the crazy cost element, combined with unreliable output and environmental damage, sounds like it is going to scupper most of these schemes.


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 5:25 pm 

Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2008 1:36 am
Posts: 513
I'm not completely against the idea of a severn barrage, as a well designed one should in actual fact provide a near constant power supply (it can be done with the right turbines and associated kit), provide transport infrastructure, pump money into UK building industry (perhaps even UK manufaturing if the contracts are done right) and annoy the hell out of a lot of bird watchers, but the way the current government seems to regard things like this as the answer to our energy crisis is frankly insane, before the first block on this was layed the lights all over the country would be out, the lead time will be insane, I doubt, even if it was pre-approved right now, that a working design could be created before 2013, and then with long lead item orders building wouldn't start until we had a CVF in the water.

we need power now, not in more than a decade.


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 5:28 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 6:06 pm
Posts: 356
This is the answer, invented at Los Alamos by US government scientists:

http://www.hyperionpowergeneration.com/

Of course, there is a 5 year waiting list to get one, but the US government could help to ramp up production.


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 6:29 pm 
Do you think there is any chance that Obama would take Brown and a few others if we agreed to a few Guantanamo detainees coming here? I think the men in orange would be less dangerous than our political elite [sic].


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 6:34 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2007 11:26 am
Posts: 1291
Location: UK
sonomaca wrote:

Sonomaca,

Could you correct me if I was wrong in my comments on a previous thread, or in my guesswork at the end of this post ?

ELF wrote:
Ref. speculative nuclear scenarios

PBRs. S. Africa – assume someone bribed someone to build one. China – ditto. France – built how many so far ?

Hyperion : Number built to date – zero ? From Wiki “ initiated discussion with US licensing authorities, planned build by 2013 “. Expect that to slip.

Submarine reactors - ex-retired or new - not a snowball’s chance in hell.


Specifically, none built to date ? And licensing status “ initiated discussion with US licensing authorities “

My guess, from what is not said on their website and the wiki entry, is that they have a patent based on the “reactor physics” – i.e. fuel composition, core geometry, neutron flux, fuel burn and thermal output… Searching about for investors. The next step would be an engineering design that can have a safety analysis done, and then be put forward for licensing approval. Serious spend, and a bit chicken-and-egg as it would be a brave organisation that invests prior to regulatory approval, which is why this is normally a game for governments. They’ve gone to the NRC for a steer as to whether there are potential show stoppers. The uranium hydride decomposition mechanism for self-regulation, and hydrogen release as a scram method, are non-conventional so I guess would come under special scrutiny.

Cheers,


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 6:42 pm 

Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 11:04 am
Posts: 740
Location: Cheshire
My hope is that the recession will put a stop to these bullshit schemes. McSnot has always relied on PFI to keep them off the national debt, but now there is no way for companies to raise any money for PFI, and, having blown about £100 billion on propping up the banks, I cannot see how the state can afford to fund them either.

Eventually reality always bites. NuLabor have done well to keep it going for as long as they did, but their policies were always going to end in tears, and the future just happened, however much the increasingly deluded snotgobbler in Number Ten attempts to deny it.


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:53 pm 

Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2005 11:11 am
Posts: 6700
If you look at the Severn Estuary in Google-Earth you'll see that it cannot be described as blue. Any attempt to build a Severn barrage will silt up, probably in 10ish years I'd guess. So bye-bye Wild-fowl trust at Slimbridge, and probably a bigger flooding problem in worcs/Glouc. On the other hand useful farm land will be reclaimed.

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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:57 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2006 10:30 am
Posts: 825
Location: Traveling again.
It stands to reason that electric demand is more in the daylight hours, the Italians have for about 50 years used the excess electric generation (night time) to pump water into man made lakes high in the mountains, then when peak demand arrives, the water is released through pipes to turbines at low level and discharged into another man made lake to await the return cycle, parks for water sports, fishing, beauty, picnics, all the summer things that kids love, problem? once it is installed there is no billions in maintenance costs, just the computer that opens and closes the sluices.
When you are ruled by idiots the horse is pushing the cart with square wheels.

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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 9:58 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 3:37 pm
Posts: 184
SandyRham wrote:
If you look at the Severn Estuary in Google-Earth you'll see that it cannot be described as blue. Any attempt to build a Severn barrage will silt up, probably in 10ish years I'd guess. So bye-bye Wild-fowl trust at Slimbridge, and probably a bigger flooding problem in worcs/Glouc. On the other hand useful farm land will be reclaimed.


Your comment about the estuary silting up is probably not too far from the mark, and the environmental impact would surely be significant. The only tidal power plant that I know of that could provide a clue is the Rance in Brittany which has totally altered the ecology of the estuary.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rance_tidal_power_plant

OK, that was built back in the 60s and I imagine much has been learned since then, but even though, the Severn is a completely different kettle of fish (or lack of them as the case may be if this goes ahead).
It is clear that there is an enormous amount of energy that could be generated by the Severn, but I'm not convinced that a tidal dam is the best way forward. Maybe a series of these things would be more reasonable.

http://www.marineturbines.com/


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 10:28 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2005 8:47 pm
Posts: 4434
Just go Nuke and coal, any melons that complain, sling in the reactor/furnace.

Problems solved....next.


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 11:17 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 6:06 pm
Posts: 356
ELF wrote:
sonomaca wrote:

Sonomaca,

Could you correct me if I was wrong in my comments on a previous thread, or in my guesswork at the end of this post ?

ELF wrote:
Ref. speculative nuclear scenarios

PBRs. S. Africa – assume someone bribed someone to build one. China – ditto. France – built how many so far ?

Hyperion : Number built to date – zero ? From Wiki “ initiated discussion with US licensing authorities, planned build by 2013 “. Expect that to slip.

Submarine reactors - ex-retired or new - not a snowball’s chance in hell.


Specifically, none built to date ? And licensing status “ initiated discussion with US licensing authorities “

My guess, from what is not said on their website and the wiki entry, is that they have a patent based on the “reactor physics” – i.e. fuel composition, core geometry, neutron flux, fuel burn and thermal output… Searching about for investors. The next step would be an engineering design that can have a safety analysis done, and then be put forward for licensing approval. Serious spend, and a bit chicken-and-egg as it would be a brave organisation that invests prior to regulatory approval, which is why this is normally a game for governments. They’ve gone to the NRC for a steer as to whether there are potential show stoppers. The uranium hydride decomposition mechanism for self-regulation, and hydrogen release as a scram method, are non-conventional so I guess would come under special scrutiny.

Cheers,


I defer to you. What is your view of the potential here? Serious safety and tech issues? If is was an easy fix, I would think govt's would be all over it. They don't seem to be.

Here's some discussion:

http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/36758

http://atomicinsights.blogspot.com/search?q=hyperion

http://www.techrockies.com/story/0017490.html

You're right in that these guys are looking for money. Won't they have to build a demonstration model up there in New Mexico before any further discussion takes place?


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2009 10:05 am 
Sounds like your government comes up with the same kind of idiotic economy busting schemes as our new Lord & Master, Mr. Obama. All idiots with degrees and no common sense whatsoever. Either that or they are TRYING to bring down our nations on purpose. CFR anyone?


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2009 3:09 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2007 11:26 am
Posts: 1291
Location: UK
sonomaca wrote:
What is your view of the potential here? Serious safety and tech issues? Won't they have to build a demonstration model up there in New Mexico before any further discussion takes place?

In my view, the comments section in your second link gives the correct flavour of the practicalities/realities.

First crunch question is whether Los Alamos already has all of the materials data, under the relevant irradiation conditions, needed for licensing. If not, then you have to do active experiments to get the data – delay and cost.

That is in a conventional licensing scenario. The marketing/investment case seems to be being made on deployment outside of the normal institutional control – plonk it in a field / bury it in rural Egypt (according to their website). I don’t know if licensing authorities would even consider this. If so, proof of safety would have to be at a whole new level. Maybe a killer, as they don’t seem to be claiming any major advantages in the conventional licensed site scenario.

Yes, a demonstration reactor is the normal next step. With the money, and assuming no unexpected show stoppers (not unreasonable, with Los Alamos pedigree), it could probably be “made to work”. But, many designs stop there, as reliability etc. show them to be uneconomic against established designs. E.g. it has liquid metal coolant, which has a poor record in operational environments. You’d be nuts to buy a commercial unit prior to this step – although you are talking smaller investment than for a traditional scale plant.

So - not saying it is all impossible, just saying side-step the hype and have a balanced view of the probabilities.


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 Post subject: Re: No better word for it
PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2009 8:55 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 6:06 pm
Posts: 356
Yes, this does seem to have problems. However, if I'm the Obama administration I'm probably taking a good look at this because we know that the alternatives (wind, solar, biofuels, tides) have serious issues. I live in the state of Nevada, and we have energy generation potential galore. We have loads of geothermal. I've talked to an aide to the governor, and he says that there are two problems. First, it's tough to locate the geothermal hot spots. Second, once you find it, transmission costs $1 million per mile. He also said that any of these projects, if funded, will generate lots of green group lawsuits (they don't like transmission lines across vast empty desert as there's always some endangered species to be found there).


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