The Future of Nuclear Power in the mix of Future Energies - Drolet ...

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The Future of Nuclear Power in the mix of Future Energies - Drolet ...

The Future of Nuclear Power in the mix of

Future Energies

Thursday May 6, 2011 12:15 AM MDT

Saskatoon Resource Investment Conference

Thomas S. Drolet

World wide cell: 1-­‐828-­‐493-­‐1523

tdrolet@tsdenergy.com

www.droletenergy.com

President: Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc.


The Need for a Move to Gen 4 Nuclear


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy

Concep:on to Birth

• ConcepVon was in pure science and the quest to discover the atom, its make up

and the stability of its consVtuent parts.

Then medical applicaVons of using the variety of energy parVcles became the

focus.

• War drove the next stage of development during concepVon. Atomic research

quickly focused on developing an effecVve weapon for use in World War II. The

work was done under the code name Manha%an Project.

• Enrico Fermi led a group of scien9sts in ini9a9ng the first self-­‐ sustaining nuclear

chain reac9on. This historic event occurred on December 2, 1942, in Chicago under

the local University football stadium.

The USA government decided to encourage the development of nuclear energy for

electricity in 1946 through an Act of Congress creaVng the Atomic Energy

Commission (AEC) in 1946. The AEC authorized the construcVon of Experimental

Breeder Reactor I at a site in Idaho. The reactor generated the first electricity from

nuclear energy on December 20, 1951.


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy (cont)

Learning to Walk

• Admiral H. Rickover was designated the head of a quite secret team to develop

Nuclear Powered submarines (he brought many private sector brains inside a

Government group). This pressurized water, fairly highly enriched nuclear fueled,

propulsion system became the early template for the first commercial reactors.

The first commercial electricity-­‐generaVng plant powered by nuclear energy was

located in Shippingport, Pennsylvania and first produced electricity in 1957. Private

industry became more and more involved in developing light-­‐water reactors aaer

Shippingport became operaVonal.

• Federal nuclear energy programs shiaed their focus to developing other reactor

technologies (BWR, HTGCR, Pebble Bed etc).


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy

”Off to School”

The nuclear power industry in the U.S. and Canada grew rapidly in the 1960’s

through the late 70’s via UVlity adopVon routes (mostly PWR, BWR and PHWR

design’s).

• In the USA, WesVnghouse designed the first fully commercial PWR of 250 MWe at

Yankee Rowe starVng up in 1960 and operated through 1992.

The boiling water reactor (BWR) was developed by the Argonne NaVonal

Laboratory, and the first one, Dresden-­‐1 of 250 MWe, designed by General Electric,

was started up earlier in 1960. By the end of the 1960s, orders were being placed

for PWR and BWR reactor units of more than 1000 MWe.

• Canadian reactor development started down quite a different track, using natural

uranium fuel and heavy water as a moderator and coolant. The first unit started up

in 1962. Today there are some 30 PHWR’s of the CANDU type in some 8 countries.


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy

”Sibling’s are maturing”

• France started out with a gas-­‐graphite design similar to Magnox in the UK and the

first reactor started up in 1956 (Magnox). France then sefled on three successive

generaVons of standardized PWR’s.

• Soviet nuclear power plants went in 2 different direcVons:

• 1-­‐-­‐boiling water graphite channel reactor (RBMK) began operaVng near Leningrad

in 1971.

• 2 -­‐-­‐ pressurized water reactor (PWR) known as a VVER (Veda-­‐Vodyanoi

EnergeVchesky Reaktor -­‐-­‐ Water Cooled Power Reactor) was built in 1000 MWe

standardized size.


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy

“Off to College”

• In the USA, UK, France and Russia a number of experimental fast neutron reactors

produced electricity from 1959, the last of these closing in 2009. This lea Russia's

BN-­‐600 as the only commercial fast reactor.

• Around the world, with few excepVons, other countries have chosen light-­‐water

designs for their nuclear power programs, so that today 60% of the world capacity

is PWR and 21% BWR.

• From the late 1970s (aaer TMI) to about 2002 the nuclear power industry suffered

some decline and stagnaVon. Few new reactors were ordered, the number coming

on line from mid 1980s lifle more than matched reVrements, though capacity

increased by nearly one third and output increased 60% due to capacity plus

improved load factors.


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy (cont)

The share of nuclear in world electricity from mid 1980s was fairly constant at

16-­‐17%. Many reactor orders from the 1970s were cancelled. The uranium price

dropped accordingly. Oil companies, which had entered the uranium field, then

bailed out and there was a consolidaVon of uranium producers.


Nuclear Power in the USA

From the US Energy

Informa:on Agency

There are 104 commercial

nuclear reactors at 64 nuclear

power plants in 31 States of

the USA.

Even though the installed

capacity is only ~ 13 % of all

electricity generaVng plants,

Nuclear plants actually deliver

20 % of all electricity in the

USA —(BASE LOAD).

Between 1985 and 1996, 34

new reactors were placed in

service.

Nuclear generaVon has also

increased as a result of higher

uVlizaVon of exisVng capacity

and from technical

modificaVons to the nuclear

plant

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


World Nuclear Energy Genera:on (15%)

Note: Twenty-­‐one

other countries

account for another

399 billion KWh,

represen:ng 15% of

total world nuclear

genera:on. (i.e. UK,

Sweden, Belgium,

Taiwan, Czech

Republic,

Switzerland,

Finland, India etc.

TOTAL: 31 Countries

overall

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy

The first setback in the maturing process

• 1979, March 28. The worst accident in U.S. commercial reactor history occurs at

the Three Mile Island nuclear power staVon near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The

accident is caused by a loss of coolant from the reactor core due to a combinaVon

of mechanical malfuncVon and human error. An open pressure relief valve

permifed coolant water to escape from the primary system, and was the principal

mechanical cause of the true coolant-­‐loss meltdown crisis that followed. That

sequence was preceded by a series of man and machine failures during a rouVne

maintenance acVvity on the secondary (non nuclear) side.

ReacVons

• 1983, January 7. The Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA) establishes a program to

site a repository for the disposal of high-­‐level radioacVve waste, including spent

fuel from nuclear power plants. It also established fees for owners and generators

of radioacVve waste and spent fuels, who pay the costs of the program.

• 1985 The InsVtute of Nuclear Power OperaVons (INPO) forms a naVonal academy


Three Mile Island SchemaVcs

Three Mile Island

Unit 2 and url of

reasonably

complete review of

the Accident

(Wikipedia)

hap://

en.wikipedia.org/

wiki/

Three_Mile_Island

_accident

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


The Early Development Of Nuclear Power Plant Energy (cont)

The Second Accident-­‐Chernobyl

• 1986, April 26. Operator error causes two explosions at the Chernobyl No. 4

nuclear power plant in the former Soviet Union. The reactor has an inadequate

containment building, and large amounts of radiaVon escape.


Russian Power Reactors in OperaVon

Source

Washington Post

April 2011

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Chernobyl Power Schema:cs

Schema:c of

Chernobyl and a

url to Bernard

Cohen’s (U of

Piasburg) Book

(Chapter 7) on

the details of the

Accident

hap://

www.phyast.pia.

edu/~blc/book/

chapter7.html

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Chernobyl Unit 4 Early May 1986

Chernobyl-4

reactor after the

accident

(center), its

turbine building

(lower left), and

Chenobyl-3

(center right).

(Source ANS

website April

2011)

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


The Basics of What Happened

at Chernobyl Unit 4, 26 April 1986

The tragedy was a result of a combinaVon of

design flaws that made the reactor dangerous

to operate and lapses in safety procedures.

The result was an accident which destroyed

the reactor in a fatal release of heat, fire and

steam in a mafer of seconds.

The Chernobyl reactors were a special design

using highly enriched uranium in a graphite

moderator—and as we learned from studying

the event—the accident could only have

happened with this type of design.

The reactors were created to produce weapons

grade plutonium for the Soviet military forces

along with electricity for commercial use.

They were difficult to operate and required

constant adjustment to remain stable.

The officer in charge was an electrical engineer

who was not a specialist in reactor plants.

The sequence of events which caused the

accident occurred when operators began an

engineering procedure to test the main

electrical generator, which was outside of the

reactor building.

• Delays in starVng the test, and management

pressure to meet the schedule, resulted in

several crucial outcomes that combined to

cause the accident.

(Source—ANS website)

Please also see Bernard Cohen’s Excellent book (Chapter 7) at the url below for a detailed and accurate account of the accident.

hfp://www.phyast.pif.edu/~blc/book/chapter7.html

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


The Base Load Effect

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Festering Fukushima-­‐-­‐ The Third shoe to drop

The man has a heart afack. Is it Fatal?

The 6 unit, 4000 MWe site was in a direct line to the

ravages of an unbelievable 9.0 Earthquake and 37

foot Tsunami at the plant-sea interface.

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Japan’s Nuclear Energy Plants

Text

about

Japan’s

Nuclear

Plants

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Boiling Water Reactor SchemaVcs

Text about Boiling

Water Reactor Design

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


General Electric Mark I BWR Reactor

Source

Washington Post

April 2011

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Status of Fukushima Reactor Systems

as of late April 2011

Source John

Williams

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


The Most Cri:cal Impera:ve:

New Nuclear Reactors Types of Genera:on III and IV


Fukushima Reactor Units Status as of 2 May 2011

Unit 1 2 3 4

Power (MWe /MWth) 460/1380 784/2381 784/2381 784/2381

Type of Reactor BWR-3 BWR-4 BWR-4 BWR-4

Status at time of EQ In service – auto shutdown In service – auto shutdown In service – auto shutdown Outage

Core and fuel integrity Damaged Severe damage Damaged No fuel in the Reactor

RPV & RCS integrity

RPV temperature

decreasing

RPV temperature stable RPV temperature stable Not applicable due to

outage plant status

Containment integrity No information Damage suspected Damage suspected

AC Power

AC power available - power

to instrumentation – Lighting

to Central Control Room

AC power available – power

to instrumentation – Lighting

to Central Control Room

AC power available – power

to instrumentation – Lighting

to Central Control Room

AC power available –

power to instrumentation –

Lighting to Central Control

Room

Building Severe damage Slight damage Severe damage Severe damage

Water level of RPV

Around half of Fuel is

uncovered

Around half of Fuel is

uncovered

Pressure of RPV Slowly increasing Stable Stable

CV Pressure Drywell Stable Stable Stable

Water injection to RPV

Injection of freshwater –

via mobile electric pump

with off-site power

Injection of freshwater –

via mobile electric pump

with off-site power

Around half of Fuel is

uncovered

Injection of freshwater –

via mobile electric pump

with off-site power

Water injection to CV No information No information No information

Spent Fuel Pool Status

Fresh water injection by

concrete pump truck

Freshwater injection to the

Fuel Pool Cooling Line

Freshwater injection via

Fuel Pool Cooling Line

and Periodic spraying

Not applicable due to

outage plant status

Fresh water injection by

concrete pump truck

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Oil: Running almost Flat out

Energy

Prices

Must

Rise

Peak Oil

Produc9on

May Already be

Here Science

Vol. 331 March

25 2011, PP

1510 1511


Can Renewable Energy Replace Nuclear in the

next decade?

(New York Times, March 26, 2011 )


Shale Gas


Stepping on the (Natural) Gas


Basic Needs of New Nuclear in the New Energy Future

• LocaVon issues—UVlity Franchise vs. best overall locaVon

• Increased Safety, convecVve cooling, backup shutdown

systems

• Modular construcVon

• MulVple back-­‐up cooling and emergency power supply

systems

• Cheaper to build and cheaper kwe-­‐hr operaVonal costs.

• High availability (base load, fuel and grid)

• Long Lived infrastructure

• Predictable regulaVon and approval processes

• Waste Disposal System and potenVally Fuel reprocessing

• New fuel cycle? Thorium?, Fast Breeders?


Engineering and ScienVfic Advances Have Changed

1960s Mark 1 Nuclear Reactor Designs

• In seismology parVcularly tsunami research

• In geological understanding of fault structures.

• In metallurgy and reactor construcVon techniques.

• In digital instrumentaVon and control systems.

• In fuel design and spent fuel handling and dry

storage.

• In back up emergency cooling systems

• INPO Training


A Significant Investment in Gen 3+ Nuclear Energy in

The Emerging World (2000 -­‐-­‐2008)


Befer Nuclear Technologies

• GeneraVon 4 Nuclear (2030)

• Pebble Bed (Chinese test bed 2011)

• Travelling Wave (Gates, Areva 2030)

• CANDU (2 nd rate treatment for a first rate system)

• Modular Systems (Babcock and Wilcox 2020)

• Passive Cooling (AP 1000 Today)

• Thorium, Beryllium/ Uranium, MOX

• Helium cooling in place of water.


Our Necessarily Mixed Energy Future

• Safe and cheaper nuclear -­‐ New Nuclear

• Intermediate power from coal, shale gas, oil sands, shale oil

and LNG.

• Renewable Energy

• Energy Efficiency Technologies

• ConservaVon Technologies

• Ironically the electric car forces increased global reliance on

coal, (parVcularly in China) and Nuclear Energy.

• Centralized Power with befer Transmission Systems

• Distributed GeneraVon—the ulVmate is a Bafery


Fuel Waste Disposal : Yucca Mountain

The NWPA’s 1987 amendment designated Yucca

Mountain, by law, as the only site approved for

consideration as the nation’s nuclear waste repository,

and it appears that only Congress has the authority to

change the law. The act also requires that the licensing

process for Yucca be completed by the Nuclear

Regulatory Commission before any decision can be

made concerning its fate.

The President and Secretary have not considered this

law and have attempted to withdraw the application

from the NRC before it can deliver its final report..

President Obama’s executive memorandum of March

9, 2009, stated, “The public must be able to trust the

science and scientific process informing public policy

decisions. Political officials should not suppress or alter

scientific or technological findings and

conclusions . . . .”The Department of Energy’s license

application is based on 30-plus years of scientific

studies. The NRC’s independent review would answer

once and for all whether the site is scientifically suitable

to store nuclear waste, yet The Administration want to

withdraw this application and thereby suppress the

results of the review.

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Thorium as a Nuclear Fuel

Estimated world thorium

resources (Reasonably assured and

inferred resources recoverable at up to $80/

kg Th)

Country Tonnes % of total

Australia 489,000 19

USA 400,000 15

Turkey 344,000 13

India 319,000 12

Venezuela 300,000 12

Brazil 302,000 12

Norway 132,000 5

Egypt 100,000 4

Russia 75,000 3

Greenland 54,000 2

Canada 44,000 2

Sou Afr 18,000 1

Other 33,000 1

Self regulating when it is ON

Passively safe when it is OFF

Inherently safe in case of an

accident

World total 2,610,000

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Simple Basics of a Thorium Molten Salt Reactor

Molten Salt Reactor (MSR)

Molten Salt Reactors (MSR’s) are liquid-fueled reactors that can be

used for production of electricity. Electricity production and waste

burn-up are envisioned as the primary missions for the MSR.

Fissile, fertile, and fission isotopes are dissolved in a hightemperature

molten fluoride salt with a very high boiling point (1,400

C) that is both the reactor fuel and the coolant. The nearatmospheric-pressure

molten fuel salt flows through the reactor

core. Fission occurs within the flowing fuel salt that is heated to

~700oC, which then flows into a primary heat exchanger where the

heat is transferred to a secondary molten salt coolant.

The fuel salt then flows back to the reactor core. The clean salt in

the secondary heat transport system transfers the heat from the

primary heat exchanger to a high-temperature cycle that converts

the heat to electricity.

Drolet & Associates Energy Services, Inc. © 2011


Six Safer

Nuclear:

1. AP1000

2. ESBWR

3. Pebble Bed

4. mPower

5. Liquid

Fluoride

Thorium

6. Travelling

Wave

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