How Much Fuel Does It Take To Power The World?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by RootBeerMan, Sep 20, 2017.

  1. RootBeerMan macrumors 65816

    RootBeerMan

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    #1
    This is an interesting piece on fuels that we are currently using, and fuels we may one day use. Renewables are a decent return on investment, but the jewels in our crown should be nuclear (uranium or, my favourite, thorium). We are doing OK with LNG but we can get moire bang for our buck with nuclear. While having a few different fuels in our basket is good thing, it's time we started phasing out fossil fuels and moved to cleaner technologies. While fusion would be a great leap forward, we are some way away from that. Same with matter/anti matter. We have the capability and tech to move to cleaner and more efficient pwoer sources. Now all we need is the will and to get certain people out of the way.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/starts...does-it-take-to-power-the-world/#ec650ec16d93
     
  2. edk99 macrumors 6502a

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  3. Zenithal macrumors 604

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    #3
    You're from Florida. The way you people drive, it'd take a few hours before nuclear fallout spread.
     
  4. velocityg4 macrumors 601

    velocityg4

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    #4
    Nuclear definitely needs to be invested in. Bill Gates' Terrapower is quite promising. Along with other projects with the potential of running off our stock piles of nuclear waste (reducing them). The safer molten salt reactor design sounds much better. As it is supposedly meltdown proof. As it can't reach critical temperature even with a coolant failure.

    Potentially these could eventually run off unrefined ore. If it can run off nothing more dangerous than raw ore. You could place them on commercial ships.
     
  5. HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #5
    You can have it. Lobby for electric power generation via Thorium Reactors. Fill the battery pack of your electric F150. Now you would be nuclear powered. Simple.
     
  6. Huntn, Sep 23, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2017

    Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #6
    For perspective, a Popular Science article decades ago based on electrical usage, proposed that a 10x10 square mile solar farm in the Western US could power the entire country, if distribution was not a problem.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 23, 2017 ---
    I've read about the benefits of Thorium Reactors, but my impression is that it is China that is building one. I guess we can't afford to? :oops:
     
  7. HEK, Sep 23, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2017

    HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #7
    Correct we spending our money on worthwhile things like 16 year war in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    Just because Thorium is 10 times as plentiful as uranium. That the reaction in Molten Salt Reactors leaves no waste and can actually burn current stored waste. That Thorium Reactors can be built small, place where power is needed, can not melt down, needs no giant pressure vessel.

    Why would we want to build those. Thorium Reactors don’t produce plutonium for making bombs.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 23, 2017 ---
    China, India, Russia, and others all have Thorium reactor projects. We used to back in 1970. Nixon decided to go with fast breeder plutonium reactor instead. Chinese came to US to gather information from our Thorium reactor research.

    Country that engineers a Molten Salt Thorium reactor will be set for next thousand years. Tiny foot print, fail safe operation, no cooling needed, shuts down safely on it’s own. Produces electricity cheaper than solar or wind. Back in 1940s it was the choice by head of US atomic Energy to use Thorium for electricity production.

    But was overruled in favor of uranium high pressure style reactors because they produce plutonium for weapons. Had we pursued the Thorium route we would be swimming in electricity, no need for fracking, coal, way reduce oil and natural gas. Probably not be in climate mess. But hey we got 50,000 nuclear weapons.

    We make all the right choices
     
  8. velocityg4 macrumors 601

    velocityg4

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    #8
    It's a lot easier to get it built in those countries. Here you have to deal with all sorts of federal regulators, committees, protestors and lawsuits. Which all work to prevent the construction of any new nuclear plant in the US. It's only recently regulation has lightened up and allowed the first new construction to begin since 3-mile Island.
     
  9. Huntn, Sep 23, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2017

    Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #9
    There are zero reasons that justify why we don't have a Thorium reactor in the works, except maybe something to do with our heads up our asses, bad National spending decisions, and gotta get those taxes lower, despite our growing debt. :oops:
     
  10. HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #10
    That’s the beauty of Molten Salt Thorium Reactors. 1/10 the size of high pressure 3 mile island style Reactors. Completely different fission process, producing almost zero waste fission products. But we can’t even get health care for every citizen like rest of world, so yeah forget it happening here. Go China !
     
  11. velocityg4 macrumors 601

    velocityg4

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    #11
    You hit the nail on the head right there.

    I think it has to do with people not understanding the differences in reactor technologies. They hear nuclear and think "Ugg, Nuclear Bad Solar Good" (in caveman voice). Then start protesting any planned nuclear plant. Then the politicians are getting lobbied by the anti-nuclear crowd and fossil fuel producers.

    Right now we could run our grid on clean cheap nuclear reactors. If we want to truly switch to electric cars. Our grid will need much more power generation.

    Those fossil fuels would be better saved for our many other uses besides power generation and heating.

    This is supposed to be the atomic age. We have the technology. Have had it for quite a while. We don't use it.

    We could have high speed electric passenger and freight trains. Commute in electric cars. Run our AC at 20C without guilt or worrying about the power bill. Unlimited range navy. Clean commercial shipping.
     
  12. HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #12
    No way we can do all that. We can’t even keep the crumbling bridge cement from falling on my car unless we put plywood under the bridge.
     

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11 September 20, 2017