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nuclear power plants

Nuclear Safety in a Post-Fukushima World: Is the US Falling Behind?

March 25, 2015 by Roman Kilisek
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US Nuclear Safety

After Fukushima, re-examinations of nuclear reactor security were launched in many of the 31 countries around the world, which possess “over 435 [operable] commercial nuclear power reactors with over 375,000 MWe of total capacity [while about] 70 more reactors are under construction.”[read more]

Would Standardized Nuclear Plant Designs Prevent Construction Overruns and Delays? Lessons From the 1970s

March 18, 2015 by Will Davis
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Nuclear Plants and Design Efficiency

 

Delays and cost overruns are running rampant in new nuclear plants under construction today in 2015. This is more or less the morass in which nuclear plant construction became mired in the 70's, when an innovative management approach was developed to ease the process: SNUPPS.[read more]

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The Bottom Line on Nuclear Energy

March 5, 2015 by David Hess
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Existing nuclear power plants are extremely valuable societal assets. Shutting them down in the absence of compelling economic or technical reasons is folly. Make no mistake. Closing well-performing nuclear plants before it is technically necessary costs society dearly.[read more]

Japan's Largest Nuclear Power Station Moves to Center of Reactor Restart Efforts

February 27, 2015 by Dan Yurman
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The Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant, composed of seven nuclear reactors, is one of the world’s largest power stations. Getting all of the reactors at the site online again is emerging as a key priority for the government and for TEPCO which owns and operates the plant.[read more]

Should NRC Spend Time and Money Simplifying Transition to Decommissioning?

January 26, 2015 by Rod Adams
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In the past three years, five nuclear reactors in the United States have permanently ceased operations and are in the process of transitioning to a decommissioning status. There is not a well defined process for making that transition and for applying appropriate, risk-informed regulations.[read more]

Prevention is Easier and Less Painful Than Cure: Keep Vermont Yankee Operable

December 30, 2014 by Rod Adams
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Vermont Yankee and Future Planning

For many reasons, including lack of focused attention by some of the people who will be most affected, the Vermont Yankee saga is in the bottom of the ninth, the home team is behind by a run or two, there are two outs, and there is already one strike on the batter at the plate.[read more]

DoE Announces $12.5B in Loans for Advanced Nuclear

December 17, 2014 by Katherine Tweed
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DoE Advanced Nuclear Loans

The Department of Energy issued a loan guarantee solicitation for $12.5 billion on Wednesday for innovative nuclear projects. This comes on top of $8 billion for advanced fossil energy projects last December, and $6.5 billion for two nuclear reactors in February, the first new to be built in the U.S. in about 30 years.[read more]

Examining the Risks of Nuclear Terrorism

December 1, 2014 by Suzanne Waldman
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The standard risk analysis algorithm for making risk comparisons is to multiply the severity and magnitude of hazards with their probabilities of occurrence. This algorithm is considered by some to be callous, as it can excessively minimize a dreadful hazard which has a small probability, dooming some to experience it.[read more]

The IPCC's Shifting Position on Nuclear Energy as a Climate Option

November 4, 2014 by Suzanne Waldman
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The International Panel on Climate Change was formed in 1988 by the UN. Its report on Response Strategies in 1990 seemed fairly neutral about strategies, proposing “[e]xpansion of conventional nuclear power plants” along with “[s]tandardized design of nuclear power plants to improve economics and safety.[read more]

Clean and Reliable, But Not so Cheap: Is the Nuclear Renaissance About to Get a Reboot in the UK?

October 24, 2014 by Oliver Kerr
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Nuclear Energy in the UK

"Nothing that comes after will be able to detract from the importance of this first great step forward." Here Sir Edwin Plowden is referring not to the UK’s latest foray into nuclear power, but rather to the grand opening of Britain’s first atomic plant more than half a century previously, in October 1956.[read more]

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Britain's First Nuclear Power Plant In A Generation Isn't A Great Deal, But Neither Are The Alternatives

October 9, 2014 by Robert Wilson
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Britain and Nuclear Energy Options

 

The European Commission announced that Britain's first new nuclear power plant for over twenty years does not violate state aid laws, and it now appears certain that it will be built. Hinkley C has been described as the "most expensive power plant ever built" by the usual assortment of green voices.[read more]

Can Nuclear Energy Secure Financing? Nuclear Power and the Capital Challenge

August 26, 2014 by Milton Caplan
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Paying for Nuclear Plants

Quite often we hear about the problem of attracting financing to support new build nuclear projects. While it is easy to agree that financing nuclear projects is a big challenge, in my view difficulty securing financing is not the issue – rather it is a symptom of a number of other very important issues that are the root cause.[read more]

Opportunity to Use Science to Establish Radiation Standards

July 12, 2014 by Rod Adams
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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) to solicit comments from the general public and affected stakeholders about 40 CFR 190, Environmental Radiation Protection Standards for Nuclear Power Operations.[read more]

HTR-PM: Nuclear-Heated Gas Producing Superheated Steam

June 28, 2014 by Rod Adams
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New Reactor Designs

The first HTR-PM (High Temperature Reactor – Pebble Module), one of the more intriguing nuclear plant designs, is currently under construction on the coast of the Shidao Bay near Weihai, China. This system uses evolutionary engineering design principles that give it a high probability of success.[read more]

Floating Nuclear Plants Could Ride Out Tsunamis

April 17, 2014 by Energy @ MIT

Floating Nuclear Plants

When an earthquake and tsunami struck the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant complex in 2011, neither the quake nor the inundation caused the ensuing contamination. Rather, it was the aftereffects, the lack of cooling for the reactor cores due to a shutdown of all power, that caused the harm.[read more]