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THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Tanada » Sat 09 Aug 2014, 13:28:33

Startup company Transatomic Power has a new Thorium reactor design they want to build for real world testing.

Cofounders Leslie Dewan and Mark Massie began dreaming up the idea in 2010, while working on their Ph.D.s in nuclear engineering at MIT. “We realized this is probably the smartest we will ever be in our lives,” Dewan remembers. So the two decided to use their knowledge to design a better reactor, one that deals with what they see as the nuclear industry’s biggest problems: waste and safety.

The design they came up with is a variant on the molten salt reactors first demonstrated in the 1950s. This type of reactor uses fuel dissolved in a liquid salt at a temperature of around 650 °C instead of the solid fuel rods found in today’s conventional reactors. Improving on the 1950s design, Dewan and Massie’s reactor could run on spent nuclear fuel, thus reducing the industry’s nuclear waste problem. What’s more, Dewan says, their reactor would be “walk-away safe,” a key selling point in a post-Fukushima world. “If you don’t have electric power, or if you don’t have any operators on site, the reactor will just coast to a stop, and the salt will freeze solid in the course of a few hours,” she says.


Much more at the link
http://spectrum.ieee.org/at-work/start-ups/start-up-transatomic-power-wants-to-build-a-better-reactor
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby StarvingLion » Sat 09 Aug 2014, 17:13:24

they need 15 million to do lab experiments and says this research will quickly reveal whether the reactor will work.If those experiments reveal no showstoppers, Transatomic hopes to find industrial partners to help build a 5-megawatt demonstration plant at a U.S. national lab site

If these start-ups can prove out their engineering and economics, they might find willing buyers for their intellectual property on other shores.

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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Mon 03 Nov 2014, 10:45:17

Chinese going for broke on thorium nuclear power, and good luck to them

The nuclear race is on. China is upping the ante dramatically on thorium nuclear energy. Scientists in Shanghai have been told to accelerate plans (sorry for the pun) to build the first fully-functioning thorium reactor within ten years, instead of 25 years as originally planned.
“This is definitely a race. China faces fierce competition from overseas and to get there first will not be an easy task”,” says Professor Li Zhong, a leader of the programme. He said researchers are working under “warlike” pressure to deliver.
Good for them. They may do the world a big favour. They may even help to close the era of fossil fuel hegemony, and with it close the rentier petro-gas regimes that have such trouble adapting to rational modern behaviour. The West risks being left behind, still relying on the old uranium reactor technology that was originally designed for US submarines in the 1950s.
The excellent South China Morning Post trumpeted the story this morning on the front page of its website.
As readers know, I have long been a fan of thorium (so is my DT economics colleague Szu Chan). It promises to be safer, cleaner, and ultimately cheaper than uranium. It is much harder to use in nuclear weapons, and therefore limits the proliferation risk.
There are ample supplies of the radioactive mineral. It is scattered across Britain. The Americans have buried tonnes of it, a hazardous by-product of rare earth metal mining.
more at the link,
http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/finance/am ... o-them/?fb
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Wed 19 Nov 2014, 12:35:21

Nice YouTube from the Thorium future movement,

http://youtu.be/vFplTgRc--g
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Wed 19 Nov 2014, 20:43:46

China getting serious about thorium is the possible game changer.
Fast moving,focused, stable, one voice,government with long term agendas and heaps of cash and economies of scale, give it a massive advantage over western democracies.
You just look at their fast rail business it went from nothing to the biggest in a decade.
Thorium could do the same and drive the trains and factories.
Im sure thats the thinking. (along with wind and solar expansions)
Whether the motivation is altruistic measure to improve the lives of its citizens or to maintain stability for the ruling elite,doesnt really matter the end game is the same.

In an effort to reduce the number of coal-fired plants, the Chinese government has brought forward by 15 years the deadline to develop a nuclear power plant using the radioactive element thorium instead of uranium.

A team of researchers in Shanghai has now been told it has 10 instead of 25 years to develop the world's first such plant.

"In the past, the government was interested in nuclear power because of the energy shortage. Now, they are more interested because of smog," Professor Li Zhong, a scientist working on the project, told the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post.

An advanced research centre was set up in January by the Chinese Academy of Sciences with the aim of developing an industrial reactor using thorium molten salt technology, the newspaper reported.


http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/m ... og-thorium
Even if thorium became a reality
You would need massive construction and spread to make it global if that was your aim???
It doesnt solve the limited resource problems
That will require a change in recycling,and business models and the way economies are structured and possibly a new religion/spirituality to replace the current dominant ones of capitalism/consumerism/the individual/greed.
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Sat 10 Jan 2015, 14:42:56

http://moltensalt.org/references/static ... IR-332.pdf

Detailed study on Thorium Chloride systems, quite interesting.
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Wed 19 Apr 2017, 19:12:09

China is jumping on Thorium reactors like a WWF wrestler. They are pursuing multiple tracks of prototype and detail testing work, and are exploring both solid and liquid fuel versions.


https://youtu.be/5UT2yYs5YJs
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Sun 23 Apr 2017, 04:01:04

A very good, but very long article on Thorium fueled reactors, much more at link below the quote.


Humanity may face an energy crisis as the world's population rapidly grows.

Nuclear power plants can generate bountiful, carbon-free electricity, but their solid fuel is problematic, and aging reactors are being shut down.
A Cold War-era liquid-fueled reactor design could transform thorium — a radioactive waste from mining — into a practically limitless energy source.
US engineers proved such a system works during the 1960s. However, the military canceled the project and it was nearly forgotten.

Companies and governments are now trying to revive and evolve the design, but development costs, engineering challenges, and nuclear-weapons concerns all pose hurdles.

The lifeblood of modern civilization is affordable, free-flowing energy.

It gives us the power to heat our homes. Grow and refrigerate food. Purify water. Manufacture products. Perform organ transplants. Drive a car. Go to work. Or procrastinate from work by reading a story about the future of energy.

Today's cheap, bountiful supplies make it hard to see humanity's looming energy crisis, but it's possibly coming within our lifetimes. Our numbers will grow from 7.36 billion people today to 9 billion in 2040, an increase of 22%. Rapidly developing nations, however, will supercharge global energy consumption at more than twice that rate.


http://www.businessinsider.com/thorium- ... ftr-2017-2
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Mon 15 Jan 2018, 00:19:24

https://sciencealert.com/researchers-ha ... r-40-years

The First Thorium Salt Reactors in Over 40 Years Were Just Switched on in Europe


It's still early days, but the use to thorium as an alternative to uranium could provide a cleaner, safer fuel source that would be harder to weaponise. With nuclear energy a booming industry in countries such as China and fear of nuclear threats on the rise, returning to this controversial topic could be well worthwhile.

Netherlands-based nuclear power provider, NRG, are taking a gamble. They're conducting experiments that could see a shift from uranium-based nuclear power to thorium.

In the historical battle between using uranium or thorium as a nuclear fuel, uranium provided both sides of the Cold War with a potential source of weapons-grade plutonium.

But the world is changing, and with global warming, anxiety over nuclear accidents, and the promise of more countries going nuclear, thorium is back on the table as a viable energy resource.

"This is a technology with much perspective for large scale energy production. We want to have a head-start once the technology will break through," says NRG researcher Sander de Groot.

Thorium is an element high up on the periodic table. Similar to uranium, its various isotopes are unstable, meaning the atoms decay by spitting out alpha particles – helium atoms without the electrons.
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Tanada » Thu 11 Aug 2022, 12:04:28

Rune wrote:The CERN Thorium Conference doesn't seem ke some sort of light-weight run-of-the-mill get together. Here's the program minus all the coffee breaks and lunch breaks. It looks like a serious conference.

Program

Monday, 2013-10-28

09:00 - 09:15 Welcome
09:15 - 09:45 Introduction to ThEC13 by representative of iThEC (Claude Haegi, Former President of Geneva Government)
09:45 - 10:20 A Future for Thorium Power? (Carlo Rubbia, IASS, Potsdam, Germany, GSSI, L'Aquila, Italy)

Session 1

National & International Thorium Programs

11:00 - 11:30 Towards Sustainable, Secure and Safe Energy Future: Leveraging Opportunities with Thorium (Anil Kakodkar, India)
11:30 - 12:00 Thorium Energy R&D in China (Hongjie Xu, SINAP, China)
12:00 - 12:30 The Japanese Thorium Programme (Toshinobu Sasa, JAEA, Japan)
12:30 - 13:00 Thorium Fuel Cycle activities in IAEA (Uddharan Basak, IAEA)
13:00 - 13:30 Overview of European Thorium Research Activities (Didier Haas, Belgium)

Session 2

National & International Thorium Programs (Cont.)

15:00 - 15:30 Overview of the Thorium Programme in India (Pallippattu KKrishnan Vijayan, BARC, India)
15:30 - 16:00 The UK's Strategy on Thorium Nuclear Technologies (Robert Arnold, Department of Energy and Climate Change, London, UK)
16:00 - 16:30 The Feasibility and Desirability of Employing Thorium Fuel Cycle for Power Generation (Bal Raj Sehgal, Nuclear Power Safety, Sweden)
16:30 - 17:00 MYRRHA: A Flexible and Fast Spectrum Irradiation Facility (Hamid Ait Abderahim, SCK-CEN Mol, Belgium)

Session 3

Innovative Thorium- Reactor Concepts (incl. Industrial Programmes)

17:30 - 18:00 The Thorium Cycle: Past Achievements & Future Prospects (Dominique Grenèche, ex-CEA, France)
18:00 - 18:30 Thorium Molten Salts, Theory and Practice (Paul Madden, Queen's College, UK)
18:30 - 19:00 Flibe Energy LFTR Development Strategy (Kirk Sorensen, Flibe Energy, USA)

Tuesday

Session 4

Innovative Thorium- Reactor Concepts (incl. Industrial Programmes) (Cont.)

08:30 - 09:00 And Industrial View on Thoirum: Possibilities, Challenges and Paths Forward (Luc Van Der Durpel, AREVA, France)
09:00 - 09:30 Global and Turkish perspectives of Thorium fuel for nuclear energy (Muammer Kaya) (Osmangazi University, Turkey)
09:30 - 10:00 Opportunities and Challenges for Thorium in Commercial MSRs (Tony Donaldson and Joel Turner, Rolls-Royce, UK)
10:00 - 10:30 Current Czech R&D in Thorium MSR Technology and Future Directions (Jan Uhlir, Research Center Rez, Czech Republic)

Session 5

Innovative Thorium- Reactor Concepts (incl. Industrial Programmes) (Cont)

11:15 - 11:45 Thorium Nuclear Power and Non-Proliferation (Hans Blix, ex Director General of IAEA, Sweden)
11:45 - 12:15 The Road to Enablement for a Liquid-Fuel Reactor Fuelled by Thorium (Laurence O'Hagan, Weinberg Foundation)
12:15 - 12:45 Thorium in LWR:s First Results from Ongoing Irradiation Campaign in the Halden Reactor (Øystein Asphjell, SCATEC, Oslo, Norway)

Session 6

Thorium- Fuel Cycle - Transmutation

14:30 - 15:00 Utilization Potential of Thorium in CANDU Reactors and in Fusion-Fission (Hybrid) Reactors (Sümer Sahin, Atılım University, Turkey)
15:00 - 15:30 Introducing the thorium fuel cycle (Daniel P. Mathers NNL, UK)
15:30 - 16:00 Recycling Challenges of thorium-based fuels (Piaray Kishen Wattal, BARC, India)
16:00 - 16:30 Aqueous and Pyro-reprocessing (Sylvie Delpech, CEA, France)
16:30 - 17:00 PSI Studies on Advanced fuel cycle options for Fast/Therman MSR Utilizing Thorium (Jiri Krepel, PSI, Switzerland)

Session 7

Thorium- Fuel Cycle - Transmutation

17:30 - 18:00 Nuclear Data Development Related to Th-U Fuel Cycle in China (Haicheng Wu, CIAE, China)

Conference banquet talk delivered by M. Pascal Couchepin
Former President of the Swizz Confederation

Wednesday

Session 8

Thorium- Reactor Physics

08:30 - 09:00 Nuclear Data Development Related to Th-U Fuel Cycle in India (Srinivasan Ganessan, BARC, India)
09:00 - 09:30 Nuclear Data for the Thorium fuel Cycle and Transmutation (F. Gunsing, CEA, France)
09:30 - 10:00 Fast Reactor Physics (K. Mikityuk, PSI, Switzerland)
10:00 - 10:30 Introduction to the Physics of Thorium Molten Salt Fast Reactors (Elsa Merle-Lucotte, IN2P3 CNRS, Grenoble, France)

Session 9

Accelerator- Driven Systems

11:00 - 11:30 ADS Physics and Motivations (J.P. Revol, iThEC/CERN, Geneva)
11:30 - 12:00 Review of Accelerators for ADS (A.C. Muller, CNRS-IN2P3, France)
12:00 - 12:30 Cyclotrons for ADS (P. Mandrillon, AIMA, FR)
12:30 - 13:00 Euratom MAX Program: the MYRRHA Accelerator Experiment (Frederic Bouly, LPSL Grenoble, France)
13:00 - 13:30 Accelerator development for ADSR (Roger Barlow, Huddersfield University, UK)

Session 10

Accelerator- Driven Systems

14:45 - 15:05 Spallation Target Developments (Michael Wohlmuther, PSI, Switzerland)
15:05 - 15:30 MEGAPIE: the world's first high-power liquid metal spallation neurton source (Christian Latgé, CEA, France)
15:30 - 16:00 Thorium Target Design for Accelerator Driven-Molten Salt Reactors (Laszlo Sajo'Bohus, Universidad Simon Bolivar, Venezuela)
16:00 - 16:30 Virginia ADS Consortium (Ganapati Myneni, Virginia Tech, USA)

Session 11

Accelerator- Driven Systems

17:30 - 18:00 KURRI Thorium-loaded ADS Experiment (Cheolho PYEON) (Kyoto, Japan)
18:00 - 18:30 A Status and Prospect of Korea ADS (Jong-Seo Chai, Sungkyunkwan University, Seoul, Korea)

Thursday

Session 12

Accelerator- Driven Systems

08:30 - 09:00 The Troisk ADS Project (Stanislav F. Sidorkin, INR-Troisk, Russia)
09:00 - 09:30 China ADS project (Lei Yang, IMP CAS, China)
09:30 - 10:00 Accelerator Driven Systems for Thorium Utilization in India (S. B. Degweker, BARC, India)
10:00 - 10:30 The iThEC Strategy (Y. Kadi, iThEC/CERN, Geneva, Switzerland)

Session 13

Round Table Discussion

11:00 - 13:00 Introduction: 7 times 5 minute presentations by session chairs:
– National & International Thorium Programmes (Session 1 and 2; Anil Kakodkar, Alex Mueller)
– Innovative Thorium Reactor Concepts (Sessions 3, 4, 5; Egil Lillestol, Sylvie Delpech)
- Thorium-Fuel Cycle and Transmutation (Sessions 6 and 7)
– Thorium-Reactor Physics (Session 8; Robert Cywinski)
– Accelerator-Driven Systems: The accelerator (Session 9; Mike Seidel)
– Accelerator-Driven Systems: the spallation target (Session 10; Yacine Kadi)
- Accelerator-Driven Systems: National projects (Session 11 and 12; Andreas Pautz, Karel Samec)

Discussion: Critical vs subcritical systems for thorium - relative merits; next steps in thorium technology developments; international collaboration framework

12:30 - 13:00 Conference Summary and a Look into the Future of Thorium Technologies (Jean-Pierre Revol, iThEC, Geneva, Switzerland)


India is pressing forward with their plans to build a prototype Accelerator Driven Subcritical Thorium Reactor. Many pictures and diagrams at link below quoted text.
This ADS Nuclear Reactor Would Never Go Critical In India …. & That Is A Good Thing

In the construction of a Nuclear Power Plant [NPP], attainment of Criticality is an occasion, where the developer & operator collectively concur that, "the kid has come of age". A moment to rejoice where, otherwise, grave, sombre individuals betray their usual persona, displaying unrestrained glee, hugging one another, feeding, eating the customary लड्डू/पेड़ा/बर्फी. Subsequent measures primarily involve sustaining what has been achieved. Reactor going Critical is the last major milestone in the Commissioning of a NPP. The sense of satisfaction & happiness among stakeholders is, therefore, understandable.

Work is underway, in India, to put a stop to this.

Deep within the facilities of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre [BARC], India's foremost Nuclear establishment, one whose Airspace is secured by emplaced SAM batteries, whose premises are guarded by personnel of the elite CISF & where access control is second nature, Engineers & Scientists are working on an all-new Reactor Technology. One that no other country in the world has sustainably demonstrated, so far.

Criticality is the state of a Power-generating Reactor, where it generates more power than what it consumes. Thus, now, it becomes a net Power producer. The Reactor is in Neutron equilibrium. The number of Neutrons released is equal to the sum of the Neutrons participating in Fission plus those that escape. The Power output is a function of the Neutrons at play. By maintaining constant Neutron count, power stays constant.

An Accelerator Driven System, or Accelerator Driven Subcritical [ADS] Reactor, is one that generates Power, but never goes Critical. Essentially, the Subcritical Core releases net deficit Neutrons &, left to it's own devices, will encounter a Self-terminating Chain Reaction. To keep it going, the balance is made-up with the help of a Neutron Accelerator. Employing Spallation reaction, a high-energy stream of Protons impinge on a heavy metal atom, such as Lead or Bismuth, leading to Neutron release. This is, then, accelerated & fed into the Core. A practical Spallation target is one that releases 30-40 Neutrons per Proton.

Inherent safety is a defining characteristic of such a facility. The Reactor can not have an uncontrolled run of Chain Reaction, of the type the 3 Mile Island encountered. Switching off the Accelerator would eventually terminate the Fission, bringing system to a safe state. Passive cooling systems would remove the heat generated in the intervening period.

That apart, ADS Reactors hold special significance for India's own, unique 3-Stage Nuclear Programme. The higher, externally-sourced availability of Neutrons can scale-up the irradiation process of it's abundantly available, fertile Thorium 232 [Th-232], turning them into fissile Uranium 233 [U-233]. As per the 2011 USGS estimate, India alone possesses more than 50% of the global Thorium reserve. Indian ADS design envisages a Hybrid Reactor, that can use Th-232, as the main fuel, performing in-situ Transmutation. Successfully realised, this will help leapfrog the need to build-up a sufficient stockpile of U-233, as planned in the 3-stage programme, before commencing commercial operations. This parallel effort can make-up for the delays being encountered in India's 3-Stage programme, towards Thorium utilisation.

More efficient fuel utilisation can be achieved. The externally-sourced Neutron would facilitate a higher fuel burnup. Thus, one can extract more energy from a given mass of Uranium fuel, than possible in Critical Reactors.

The vexing issue of the safe disposal of Radioactive waste is another challenge that stands to benefit from Subcritical Rectors. Current practise involves encasement & storage in deep geological repositories, passing the buck into the future. Fission by-products such as Highly Radiotoxic Transuranic Americium, Neptunium, Curium & Fission Products like Iodine-129, Caesium-135, Technetium-99 have half-life of Million years.

Present-day Indian Power Reactors generate these Radioactive by-products in significant amounts. Except for Plutonium, that finds use as a Neutron trigger for Fast Reactors & Military applications, the remaining elements are kept in storage, unaddressed. It, therefore, is vital to grab the bull by it's horns & address the elephant in the room. Conventional Thermal Reactors are inadequate in burning these Radioactive wastes, primarily due to factors of Delayed Neutron Fraction & Negative Temperature Feedback conditions, under which they function.

In ADS, on the other hand, 1 can maintain conditions to use them as fuel. Thus, not only would one generate energy from it, during this process, they would be converted into, either, stable elements, or Radio Nuclides with much shorter half-life.

With all the virtues ADS promises to deliver, one would not be faulted for asking, why, then, Critical Reactors? For one, the concept of ADS, in it's current form, is relatively recent that, in 1995, Dr. Carlo Rubbia & his team first proposed while Researching at CERN. Thus, the many decades of Scientific & Engineering rigour needed to realise a Nuclear Concept, as have been initiated earlier for Fast Reactor & Fusion Reactor technologies, start from that date.

India's own interest in the ADS concept gained speed in the early part of this Millennium. It has adapted it's PURNIMA Research Reactor, located within BARC, to carry out associated studies. It, today, forms the nucleus of India's Subcritical drive. Besides synthesising the Science of ADS, one has to address major Engineering challenges in order to realise a commercially-viable system. Some of them include:

Developing a rugged high current, high energy Proton accelerator, that would perform reliably all year-round.

An effective Cooling system, that carries away the extreme heat generated during Spallation.

A high power Spallation target, having good Neutron economy, while also withstanding the physical degradation due to the irradiation effects.

A method to monitor the sub-criticality of the Core, that would determine Reactor performance.

An understanding of the Reactor's behaviour is first gained via conceptualisation computer simulation models. Running the code, based on the Multigroup Neutron-Transport Theory, recursively iterating it to refine performance, before zeroing in on the most acceptable model. This would be verified out on table-top experiments, be it a table weighing a few tonnes. Feedback from these experiments would be incorporated into the model, refining it further. A cycle that repeats till physical experiments produce designed outcomes. A successful table-top experiment would allow for progressively scaling up of the endeavour, culminating into a commercial scale ADS. An amalgamated series of concurrent & sequential, multi-pronged activities, spanning 3-4 decades of sustained, well-funded efforts.

BARC has concluded that the Accelerator needed to operate a full-scale Subcritical Reactor would consume around 15% of the power generated, with the remaining available for distribution. A sustainable proposition. To further improve performance, it has proposed a design, called One-way Coupled Fast Thermal ADS Reactor.

It combines operations of, both, Fast & Thermal Reactors. The Neutron is, first, accelerated in a smaller Lead-cooled Fast region having fissile Plutonium. Here, the Lead also acts as the Spallation target. It, then, enters the main Thermal region of the Core, where it does it's business. This approach would accrue up to 80% reduction in Power consumption. Blanketing the Fast region with Radioactive wastes, would burn them into benignity [ref: above]. This is also the answer to the question asked earlier.

BARC is, currently, in the process of studying the Thermal Region of such a Reactor, at a scale, in it's specially setup Beryllium Oxide Reflected & HDPE Moderated Multiplying Assembly [BRAHMMA] facility. The aim is to, first, understand it's behaviour at low power levels. Thus, a Neutron Generator source, capable of operating at levels up to 14 MeV, powers the system. The Rig is modular in design, that allows Researchers to vary the sub-criticality, by operating it with different fuel compositions - Natural Uranium, Slightly Enriched Uranium [SEU], Low Enriched Uranium [LEU], or a mix, as per requirement.

Subsequent plans with the Rig also include studying the Fast Reactor component of the Indian design, introducing a Thorium-Plutonium Mixed Oxide [MOX] fuel. This stage is additionally vital due to the role it would play in Radioactive waste disposal.

Critical to the success of ADS is the development of the Accelerator. Currently, there are 2 types under active consideration - the Proton LINear ACcelerator [LINAC] & the Cyclotron model. Indian efforts are tending towards the former. Being of modular design, scaling it up is more convenient. However, a LINAC of the size needed for commercial operations could extend to 800 m, in length. Another challenge, that needs a solution.

Indian interests in Accelerator-based Science & Engineering took roots very soon after Independence. In 1953, the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research [TIFR] setup India's first facility - a 1 MeV Cockroft-Walton Accelerator, also known as a Cascade Generator. The Kolkata-based Variable Energy Cyclotron Centre [VECC] developed India's first indigenous system in 1978. The 224 cm Variable Energy Cyclotron facility continues to function to this day, having received intervening upgrades. Superconducting LINAC got setup in the country, as an upgrade to TIFR's Pelletron, yet another type of Accelerator, in the early 90s. The biggest Accelerators India operates are housed within the facilities of the Raja Ramana Centre for Advanced Technology [RRCAT], in Indore - the Synchrotron Radiation Source, Indus-1 & Indus-2. The latter imparts particles with 2.5 GeV energy level. Around 100 Accelerators, of various types & sizes, are located in India. An extremely modest number, compared to neighbouring & continental countries.

The Department of Atomic Energy [DAE] has initiated multiple programmes towards, incrementally developing Accelerators meeting ADS requirements. RRCAT is undertaking development of a 1GeV Superconducting Proton Linac based Spallation Source. Interestingly, at BARC, study is also underway to explore the feasibility of the use of, Tin [Sn] as a Spallation source.

A RRCAT collaboration with the Fermi Labs, in play, would facilitate knowledge sharing. This also enables India to provide sub-systems for it's future Accelerators.

BARC, at it's end, has commissioned a Low Energy High Intensity Proton Accelerator [LEHIPA], imparting 20 MeV of energy. It's successor would be a Medium Energy High Current LINAC. As of today, this is in the proposal stage. The Nuclear data generated would go towards building the commercial-scale High Energy, High Current Superconducting Continuous Wave Proton LINAC [1 GeV; >20 mA], that BARC proposes to setup at it's Vizag facility. One can expect this to come online around 2050-2060. A proposal to setup a consolidated Indian Multipurpose Accelerator Facility [IMAF] is in the pipelines.

As one would have concluded, Indian ADS efforts are still predominantly in the Study phase, gaining an understanding of Subcritical Physics, building up the knowledge database. A lot of ground to be covered.

For India, commercial utilisation of Thorium is the end-goal, to end the chronic energy deficiency holding it back. It promises an assurance of an equitable, green & sustainable attainment of per capita Energy consumption, ranking alongside developed Nations. Energy independence, unencumbered by Strategic imperatives, can be achieved. The country stands to be a global provider of this clean energy solution.

Towards this, India has ongoing, multiple programmes to harness the fuel - the 3-Stage Programme, Advanced Heavy Water Reactor [AHWR], High Temperature Reactor [HTR], Molten Salt Reactor [MSR], Metallic Fuel Fast Breeder Reactor. The quiver holds many arrows. ADS is one more addition to it.


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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Doly » Thu 11 Aug 2022, 14:55:07

Even if thorium became a reality
You would need massive construction and spread to make it global if that was your aim???
It doesnt solve the limited resource problems
That will require a change in recycling,and business models and the way economies are structured and possibly a new religion/spirituality to replace the current dominant ones of capitalism/consumerism/the individual/greed.


Still essentially correct. Though, recycling isn't the major issue, renewable energy is.

As for a new spirituality, I guess we are sort of seeing that, but it sure doesn't look pretty.
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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Tanada » Thu 11 Aug 2022, 17:37:41

Chinese molten-salt reactor cleared for start up

The Shanghai Institute of Applied Physics (SINAP) - part of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) - has been given approval by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment to commission an experimental thorium-powered molten-salt reactor, construction of which started in Wuwei city, Gansu province, in September 2018.

In January 2011, CAS launched a CNY3 billion (USD444 million) R&D programme on liquid fluoride thorium reactors (LFTRs), known there as the thorium-breeding molten-salt reactor (Th-MSR or TMSR), and claimed to have the world's largest national effort on it, hoping to obtain full intellectual property rights on the technology. This is also known as the fluoride salt-cooled high-temperature reactor (FHR). The TMSR Centre at SINAP at Jiading, Shanghai, is responsible.

Construction of the 2 MWt TMSR-LF1 reactor began in September 2018 and was reportedly completed in August 2021. The prototype was scheduled to be completed in 2024, but work was accelerated.

"According to the relevant provisions of the Nuclear Safety Law of the People's Republic of China and the Regulations of the People's Republic of China on the Safety Supervision and Administration of Civilian Nuclear Facilities, our bureau has conducted a technical review of the application documents you submitted, and believes that your 2 MWt liquid fuel thorium-based molten salt experimental reactor commissioning plan (Version V1.3) is acceptable and is hereby approved," the Ministry of Ecology and Environment told SINAP on 2 August.

It added: "During the commissioning process of your 2 MWt liquid fuel thorium-based molten salt experimental reactor, you should strictly implement this plan to ensure the effectiveness of the implementation of the plan and ensure the safety and quality of debugging. If any major abnormality occurs during the commissioning process, it should be reported to our bureau and the Northwest Nuclear and Radiation Safety Supervision Station in time."

The TMSR-LF1 will use fuel enriched to under 20% U-235, have a thorium inventory of about 50 kg and conversion ratio of about 0.1. A fertile blanket of lithium-beryllium fluoride (FLiBe) with 99.95% Li-7 will be used, and fuel as UF4.

The project is expected to start on a batch basis with some online refuelling and removal of gaseous fission products, but discharging all fuel salt after 5-8 years for reprocessing and separation of fission products and minor actinides for storage. It will proceed to a continuous process of recycling salt, uranium and thorium, with online separation of fission products and minor actinides. The reactor will work up from about 20% thorium fission to about 80%.

If the TMSR-LF1 proves successful, China plans to build a reactor with a capacity of 373 MWt by 2030.

As this type of reactor does not require water for cooling, it will be able to operate in desert regions. The Chinese government has plans to build more across the sparsely populated deserts and plains of western China, complementing wind and solar plants and reducing China's reliance on coal-fired power stations. The reactor may also be built outside China in Belt and Road Initiative nations.

The liquid fuel design is descended from the 1960s Molten-Salt Reactor Experiment at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in the USA.


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Re: THE Thorium Thread (merged)

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 04 Nov 2022, 11:29:18

China Approves Commissioning of Thorium-Powered Reactor

China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment on Aug. 2 gave Shanghai Institute of Applied Physics (SINAP) the green light to commission the experimental 2-MWth thorium-based molten salt reactor (TMSR-LF1) at the Hongshagang Industrial Cluster, Wuwei city, Gansu province. If successful, the TMSR-LF1 could pave the way for development and construction of a larger demonstration facility by 2030, as well as construction of a TMSR fuel salt batch pyroprocess demonstration facility to realize thorium-uranium cycle usage by the early 2040s.

The TMSR-LF1 is a proof-of-concept liquid fluoride thorium reactor that uses a fuel salt (LiF-BeF 2 -ZrF 4 -UF 4 [+ThF 4 ]) and a coolant salt (LiF-BeF 2). Fueled by a mix of thorium and uranium-235 (enriched at 19.75% by weight), it is designed to operate at a maximum working temperature of 650C over a 10-year lifetime. The liquid fuel design is based on Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s 1960s Molten-Salt Reactor Experiment (Figure 4). SINAP documents suggest the purpose of the experiment is to test pyroprocessing, refueling, and continuous gas removal; to investigate stability and safety in the operation; and to test a thorium-uranium fuel cycle.
A Focus on Thorium

China has since 2013 considered the project a “major national scientific and technological infrastructure construction project.” Documents shared by SINAP with the Generation IV International Forum suggest the experimental project is part of larger plans to develop small modular TMSRs to utilize a thorium closed fuel cycle for nuclear heat applications. Along with the liquid fuel TMSR-LF, SINAP also began developing a solid fuel MSR (TMSR-SF) that uses TRISO (TRi-structural ISOtropic particle fuel) in pebbles or prisms/blocks with a once-through fuel cycle. However, progress on that front is unclear.

While the current effort stems from a program initiated by the Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2011, SINAP has fostered ambitions to build a TMSR since 1970. A key reason is that because MSRs rely on molten salts as a means of heat transfer, they are not reliant on water, and may be suitable for arid areas like the Gobi Desert. For China, development of a thorium-based fuel cycle is also of interest owing to many advantages, especially for safety, reduced proliferation risks, and waste management.

Thorium (Th) is more abundant in nature than uranium (U), but it is “fertile rather than fissile, and can only be used as a fuel in conjunction with a fissile material such as recycled plutonium,” explained the World Nuclear Association (WNA). And while the use of thorium “as a new primary energy source has been a tantalizing prospect for many years,” extracting its latent energy value cost-effectively has been challenging, the group said.

The TMSR-LF design “claims full closed Th-U fuel cycle with breeding of U-233 and much better sustainability but greater technical difficulty,” the WNA added. “SINAP sees molten salt fuel being superior to the TRISO fuel in effectively unlimited burn-up, less waste, and lower fabricating cost, but achieving lower temperatures [600C+] than the TRISO fuel reactors [1,200C+],” it said. Near-term goals include preparing nuclear-grade ThF4 and ThO2, and testing them in an MSR.
One of the World’s First Operational Molten Salt Reactors

Media reports suggest that the TMSR-LF1 tests will begin on a batch basis with some online refueling and removal of gaseous fission products. Reports suggest the project will discharge all fuel salt after five to eight years for reprocessing and separation of fission products and minor actinides for storage. It will also “proceed to a continuous process of recycling salt, uranium and thorium, with online separation of fission products and minor actinides. The reactor will work up from about 20% thorium fission to about 80%,” World Nuclear News reported.

If successfully commissioned, the TMSR-LF1 project will become one of the world’s first operational MSR reactors in decades. The project’s rapid progress is notable. After the Ministry of Ecology and Environment granted the institute’s request to begin preliminary work on TMSRs as research reactors in 2015, it selected the Hongshagang site in December 2018. Ministry documents suggest the experimental project will comprise the reactor facilities, a radioactive waste treatment center, a security control center, and a “comprehensive experiment hall and chemical warehouse.”

The ministry approved an environmental impact report for the project in December 2019, and it issued a construction license for the TMSR-LF1 shortly afterward, in January 2020. China’s National Nuclear Safety Administration and the ministry have reportedly monitored construction quality. While the ministry in August granted its approval to begin commissioning, it urged SINAP to “strictly implement” a commissioning outline “to ensure the effectiveness of the implementation of the outline and ensure the safety and quality of debugging.” On Aug. 11, the ministry also approved a quality assurance program for the project.


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