Bill Nye on nuclear

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Nobrot
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Nobrot » Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:59 pm

Gord wrote:
Nobrot wrote:
bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:I dunno. As a kiddie I was taught "The Sun is a nuclear bomb...going off one after the other."...............and a quick google confirms this............depending on how you define it............of course/as always. We don't make it, and don't need to store it away as waste....so I'll forgo the links.

No, don't forgo the links. Where did you learn this complete bollocks?

It's an oversimplification they (used to?) teach in schools. Actually, the lesson usually started with something simplistic like that, then went on to show the ways in which it was wrong.

In a similar way, they often oversimplify that the Sun is "burning". Then they go on to explain how it's not exactly burning.

Like this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4BWh_rtYADw
So much stuff is technically wrong in it because it's been dumbed down for easy digestion.

(Right off the bat: That's not Mercury he shows, that's Venus.)

Yes I understand the science was dumbed down often to an embarrassing degree, but the point of my highlights were to emphasize Bobo's posts consist largely of low mass cushion stuffing and stocking fillers.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:11 pm

EM

There are numerous methods of dealing with long term storage of nuclear waste. As I keep telling you, the problem is political, not technical. It is human stupidity preventing us from setting up a solution. My suggestion, of an open cast mine in a desert in a geologically stable region, would work perfectly well. If it was done in south west Africa (say in the Namib desert), the dump fees would go a long way towards lifting the people out of poverty. Bobbo will tell you it is hazardous, since we do not know what will happen in the future. No doubt he thinks that some future, post holocaust peoples will go into the inhospitable desert and dig through totally unproductive dirt and rock, down to a depth of 500 meters, just so they can get irradiated. Duh!

But there have been a number of other suggestions made, and rejected, simply because people are too bloody stupid to accept the better approach.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Matthew Ellard » Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:24 am

I'm probably out of date concerning nuclear waste technology, so I gathered so facts. There is a lot to think about.

http://www.world-nuclear.org / Radioactive Waste Management
http://www.world-nuclear.org/informatio ... ement.aspx

What I didn't know
"Each radionuclidea contained in the waste has a half-life – the time taken for half of its atoms to decay and thus for it to lose half of its radioactivity. Radionuclides with long half-lives tend to be alpha and beta emitters – making their handling easier – while those with short half-lives tend to emit the more penetrating gamma rays. Eventually all radioactive wastes decay into non-radioactive elements. The more radioactive an isotope is, the faster it decays.

In terms of radioactivity, HLW (High Level Waste) is the major source arising from the use of nuclear reactors to generate electricity. Highly radioactive fission products and also transuranic elements are produced from uranium and plutonium during reactor operations and are contained within the used fuel. Where countries have adopted a closed cycle and utilised reprocessing to recycle material from used fuel, the fission products and minor actinidesb are separated from uranium and plutonium and treated as HLW (uranium and plutonium is then re-used as fuel in reactors). In countries where used fuel is not reprocessed, the used fuel itself is considered a waste and therefore classified as HLW.

If used reactor fuel is not reprocessed, it will still contain all the highly radioactive isotopes. Spent fuel that is not reprocessed is treated as HLW for direct disposal. It too generates a lot of heat and requires cooling. However, since it largely consists of uranium (with a little plutonium), it represents a potentially valuable resource, and there is an increasing reluctance to dispose of it irretrievably.Either way, after 40-50 years the heat and radioactivity have fallen to one thousandth of the level at removal. This provides a technical incentive to delay further action with HLW until the radioactivity has reduced to about 0.1% of its original level.After storage for about 40 years the used fuel assemblies are ready for encapsulation or loading into casks ready for indefinite storage or permanent disposal underground.

The options for used fuel (after cooling) are:
1) Direct disposal (after storage) to a geological repository. The material has very long-lived radioactivity, and will take about 300,000 years to reach the same level as the original ore.
2) Aqueous reprocessing to remove only uranium and plutonium. The material then only takes about 9000 years to reach the same level of radioactivity as the original ore.
3) Advanced electrometallurgical reprocessing which removes uranium, plutonium and minor actinides together for recycling in a fast reactor. The wastes then only need 300 years to reach the same level of radioactivity as the original ore. This is not yet operational on any commercial scale.


Therefore we are probably talking about storage for 50 years (cooling) plus 300 years (reduction of radiation) if the "expensive" technology is adopted.

The Australian Synroc (synthetic rock) system is a more sophisticated way to immobilise such waste, and this process may eventually come into commercial use for civil wastes (see also appendix on Synroc). To date there has been no practical need for final HLW repositories, as surface storage for 40-50 years is first required so that heat and radioactivity can decay to levels which make handling and storage easier.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:37 am

Good points, Matthew, and this is pretty much what is happening now. It is the long term disposal that seems to gather the opinions of idiots.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:14 am

Lance Kennedy wrote: Bobbo will tell you it is hazardous, since we do not know what will happen in the future. No doubt he thinks that some future, post holocaust peoples will go into the inhospitable desert and dig through totally unproductive dirt and rock, down to a depth of 500 meters, just so they can get irradiated.


Lance!!!! When you say such ungrounded things, it makes me wonder just how calcified you are. Literally UNABLE to consider anything except your own position, and that subject only to mind numbing repetition. I have said repeatedly that burial is the best alternative we have, the long term risk is ground water contamination, and that we should stop producing the poison in favor of Green Energy technology.

Completely and totally reasonable. Its your faith in unamed technology that is loopy in nature. And saying solutions exist except for Politics..........does not make politics go away. Pointing out the limitation, and then ignoring it.... is not analysis nor a solution.

Matt: I see you encounter one problem I do as well. How can PU-230 have a dangerous half life decay cycle of 500K years in one reference and yet in another nuke waste is down to 1% of hazard within 300 years? Makes no sense. I suppose the two references aren't talking about "the same" material? The first is talking about "pure" pu-239 whereas the second reference is dealing with a mix of all the nuke waste and the pu-239 risk is averaged out with the other faster decaying material? That ambiguity should be cleared up.

And back to Lance................................... do you understand what a "value" is? You are willing to put "whatever the burden is" of Nuke Waste onto our kiddies. My value is that WE should burden whatever the burden is of Not Using Nukes to generate power today in order to save our kiddies that risk..........whatever it is.

Please expressly state the value system you are championing.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:16 am

Nobrot wrote:
Gord wrote: It's an oversimplification they (used to?) teach in schools.

Ha, ha.........exactly so. You recognize it.......then deal with it as if to be taken literally.

Why you do that?
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Nobrot » Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:19 am

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:
Nobrot wrote:
Gord wrote: It's an oversimplification they (used to?) teach in schools.

Ha, ha.........exactly so. You recognize it.......then deal with it as if to be taken literally.

Why you do that?

Who are you quoting {!#%@} head.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:10 am

Bobbo

Separating out the plutonium permits it to be used as fuel in a reactor. Thus, it gets used up at a fast rate. Left to decay at its normal half life takes a long time. Not too complicated.

I am well aware of the problem of ground water contamination. Why do you think my proposal requires a desert?

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:13 am

Nobrot wrote:
bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:
Nobrot wrote:
Gord wrote: It's an oversimplification they (used to?) teach in schools.

Ha, ha.........exactly so. You recognize it.......then deal with it as if to be taken literally.

Why you do that?

Who are you quoting {!#%@} head.

You are right. I am pointing out YOUR (Nobrot's) failure to look past the surface of things and pick up on the context. "When I was a kiddie...."..... surely a strong marker for what follows is simplistic and to be taken with a grain or more of salt?

I guess it does depend on the quality of your institution.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby ElectricMonk » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:05 am

Lance Kennedy wrote:EM

There are numerous methods of dealing with long term storage of nuclear waste. As I keep telling you, the problem is political, not technical. It is human stupidity preventing us from setting up a solution. My suggestion, of an open cast mine in a desert in a geologically stable region, would work perfectly well. If it was done in south west Africa (say in the Namib desert), the dump fees would go a long way towards lifting the people out of poverty. Bobbo will tell you it is hazardous, since we do not know what will happen in the future. No doubt he thinks that some future, post holocaust peoples will go into the inhospitable desert and dig through totally unproductive dirt and rock, down to a depth of 500 meters, just so they can get irradiated. Duh!

But there have been a number of other suggestions made, and rejected, simply because people are too bloody stupid to accept the better approach.


So you admit that, currently, we have no solution to long-term storage in place (why we don't is secondary).
So how can we justify using a technology that's producing problems that we know we can't deal with, yet?
Never mind that we have countless examples of chemical companies going belly-up with one one able to tell what poison is buried where, making containment, let alone clean-up almost impossible.
You think that in 1,000 years, people will know where and how we dumped our spend rods and radiated waste?

You keep ignoring timescales, LK: nothing human-built has lasted 10,000 years intact. 10 Millennia is eternity in human terms, when no political system has survived the 300 years mark. You are making an ass-load of assumptions that the world will stay, more or less, the same forever. It hasn't in the past, and it is foolish to assume it will in the future.

Let's pose the issue in another way: suppose I was to offer you an awesome, free meal today, but in exchange you would have a slight itch on your little toe for the rest of your life - would you take that deal?

Unless using nuclear power now somehow saves future humanity, we are just freeloading on our descendants.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:55 am

EM

I don't know where you get your statment about me admitting we have no solution. There are numerous solutions. My open cast mine in the desert is one. Others exist, just as good.

Nor am I ignoring time scales. 10,000 years is absolutely NOTHING geologically. A mere eye blink. That is why I am confident that a well chosen site will not betray us by turning into a volcano or some other dreadful changeable structure. 10,000 years is a long time on the human scale, sure. But not long enough to dig over every damn desert on the planet.

We are not freeloading descendants. We are building a better world for them. Using nuclear power is one step along the way. Those who used steam engines, thereby polluting the planet, were not freeloading us. They were developing better ways of doing things, and we are better off for it.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby ElectricMonk » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:53 am

1: we have no solution in place: you have ideas, as have others, but the most consistent method actually in use today is the Russian one: sink it in the sea or put it in a concrete coffin. Your solutions are not in use, and they won't be for a while until all political, economic and physical problems are solved. For example: how do you set up a trust to monitor the nuclear site that will stay in working order and financed for 10,000 years? Calculate the cost for that, and add the bill to be price of nuclear power today if you want to have an honest discussion here.
At the very least it would make sense to put a moratorium on using nuclear power until all these issues are adressed.

2:who cares about geological timescales? We are talking about creating a problem that will last as long as it has taken us to get from the agricultural revolution to here, i.e. effectively all of human existence.

3: coal and all other pollutions can be dealt with within decades or a century on the outside, using current technology: these are mere nuisances compared to having to excavate a nuclear waste site and feed the material to a quick-breeding reactor to bring down the half-lifetime by one order of magnitude, assuming that such technology wil be developed in the future.

Don't compare apples and oranges: Nuclear waste is fundamentally different from anything else, even if it is produced in smaller quantities.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Fri Apr 21, 2017 7:37 pm

ElectricMonk wrote:how do you set up a trust to monitor the nuclear site that will stay in working order and financed for 10,000 years? .


You don't.

Any solution to disposing of nuclear waste long term involves putting the waste somewhere to prevent it being accessible. The Soviet system of dissolving it in seawater certainly does that. My suggestion is pretty close to foolproof too.

ANd no. Nuclear waste is not substantially different to other kinds of waste. Chemical wastes may be long lived also, and highly lethal. Methyl mercury is both and caused enormous problems.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:59 pm

https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... ear-waste/

Just a comment for Bobbo and EM on radioactive substances.
Both of you guys have a false view of this. Basically superstitious. You think radioactive substances like nuclear waste is some kind of bogeyman, terrible in its consequences. That is total bulldust.

Radioactive substances are found everywhere. About one part per million in your body is uranium, and about 0.5% of that uranium is radioactive uranium 235. A detector will count the radiation emitting from your own body. The total amount of 'natural' radioactive material on Earth is massive. The Earth's crust weighs about 1000,000,000,000,000,000 tonnes and one part per 10 million is radioactive elements (mostly uranium 235 and thorium). So about 100,000,000,000 tonnes of radioactive material is found in the top few kilometers of the Earth. Since these elements are heavy, and heavy elements sink, the total amount deeper down is massively greater. When a volcano erupts and lava extrudes, it is substantially radioactive.

Coal (see reference above) contains uranium and thorium, both radioactive. Those elements are concentrated in the ash when coal burns. A coal burning power station emits fly ash into the air, which carries 100 times as much radioactive material into the environment than an equivalently size nuclear power station. Does that material cause major harm? No. Why not? Because it is diluted. Can we do the same with nuclear waste? Yes, of course. If we ground up nuclear waste and diluted it with sediment sufficiently, it would become essentially harmless.

I have suggested we 'dilute' nuclear waste by burying it with a lot of soil and rubble. But it could be done safely and finally by grinding it and mixing with sediment, or dissolving it in acid, mixing with heaps of water and discharging into the ocean, or in various other ways.

Here is nothing bogeyman about nuclear waste, despite the superstitious beliefs of Bobbo and EM. It is just another pile of radioactive material, like the uranium and thorium that makes up so much of planet Earth. If disposed of responsibly, it will do no more harm than those 'natural' materials do.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sat Apr 22, 2017 1:22 am

What about Pu-239?..................dump it in the ocean too?
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sat Apr 22, 2017 1:44 am

Radioactive substances have the same toxic relationship as other poisons. That it, it all depends on dose. Lower the dose enough, and they become non toxic. If you dissolve any radioactive substance and spread it across a significant amount of water, it becomes totally non toxic, and that includes plutonium. Plutonium must be dissolved though. Dust sized particles of plutonium can be nasty. To dispose of it by grinding and mixing with sediment would require a very, very fine particle size at the end. This would be difficult, which is another reason I prefer my desert open cast mine.

I Have not seriously suggested the Soviet dissolving method, even though it works very well indeed, basically because the various greenie idiots out there would be horrified, due to their inability to think rationally.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:13 am

Ha, ha.............simply not true.

You've been given the quotes and the links.

Reason and rationality ...................... have left you.

((Detail to direct your lack of attention: No, not all poisons are the same. Pu-239 is in fact....."unique" on a number of factual counts. ................ Say Lance....... when was the last time you changed your mind on any issue on which you took an initial position?.... and actually not when, or in addition to that, what was it? Before and After. Amaze Us.))

(((Note No 2: Just because it cracks me up. You do take the position that it benefits society, future generations, to sh*t in their own water, or where they eat, or whatever scatological no-no you want to key in on. How do you explain not to sh*t in such places but that leaving Pu-239 is actually a positive thing? ....... Again: How you do that?????)))

((((Note No 3: Just to show my own restraint: no reference will be made to any interpretive evidence of the dreaded ink blots. And to that end..... everyone also sees lots of butterflies.....BUT .... IF YOU SAY: "I see inkblots.... odds are you will get lobotomized within one billing period. Again......I post mostly to crack myself up.))))

...........yes, there are always more. Life is but Notes.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:49 am

The only thing significantly different about plutonium 239 is that it is very suitable for nuclear weapons. It has a half life of 24000 years, which makes it more radioactive than uranium, but less so than other nuclear waste components like caesium and iodine. Like all forms of radioactive element, it has a toxicity that is related to its dose. A high dose means a lot of radiation, and a low dose means less. Because it can be used to make bombs, it is more important that it be disposed of responsibly.

As to sh*tting in our own waters, note that this is also OK if the dilution factor is enough. Ships have discharged sewage in untreated state in the open ocean since the first ships were built, and it caused no harm whatever. It is all about quantity. Too much makes sea water unsafe. A very low amount means no problem. Exactly the same applies to poisons and radioactive substances. A person with a good knowledge of science, and especially the science of toxicology will realise that. It is a very basic fact.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:53 am

Ha, ha.............simply not true.

You've been given the quotes and the links.

Reason and rationality ...................... have left you.

...There is "values." ................. then there are other factors. One of the other factors is............. obstinacy to the point of idiocy. ............... but then, .......... its still values. "I" will take the risk of sh*ting and living in my own {!#%@} water. I choose not to do that to the future generations. Call me.............. *whatever you called me.*===>Not worth looking up.

Values.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby ElectricMonk » Sat Apr 22, 2017 8:23 am

There is no human-made place that can be kept off-limits to future humans. Putting it all on a barge and sinking it into the Mariana Trench would be the best way to keep it out of range of our descendants, but that will just mutate and anger Godzilla.
More seriously: whatever storage we choose, it is imperative that future generations can access it, just because it is very likely that they will have better technologies to forecast and prevent possible harm coming from the site, as well as better ways of coping with radiation.


But you keep on missing the main point, LK, that even if there was a perfect solution to be had, it's not in place NOW: we accumulate waste usually on site of the reactors, which is a major health and security risk, since they were not initially designed to hold all their waste until decommissioning.
It's like using a toilet that hasn't been hooked up to the sewers because the treatment plant isn't built yet: we are producing {!#%@} with no clear idea when or where we will be able to get it out of sight/mind.
It's pretty irresponsible to rely on a technology where one of the key problems is solved only in theory, but not in practice.
I've come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:
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3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Nobrot » Sat Apr 22, 2017 10:37 am

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:What about Pu-239?..................dump it in the ocean too?

After vitrification why not?

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Cadmusteeth » Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:16 pm

You two are so set in your belief that the won't work you refuse to listen to what proponents on it are saying regardless of evidence. That's not being reasonable, that's flat out denial.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:54 pm

EM

You are correct that long term disposal is not in place now. In fact, that does not matter. Matthew made a very good point, in saying that 'short term' storage over decades is good. Radio-decay is exponential over time, meaning that it is happening at its fastest rate in the first few decades. The most dangerous radio-isotopes are decaying into non dangerous elements over that time. Even with long term systems in place, it would be best to keep the waste under water for the first couple decades and then under supervision for a few more, before being placed into a long term repository.

The key thing is to get past the idiots that create political barriers to long term, and responsible storage. Sadly, EM, it looks like you are Bobbo are in that group.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Matthew Ellard » Sat Apr 22, 2017 11:40 pm

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:Matt: I see you encounter one problem I do as well. How can PU-230 have a dangerous half life decay cycle of 500K years in one reference and yet in another nuke waste is down to 1% of hazard within 300 years? Makes no sense.
That's a fair question. The waste goes through a secondary process in a fast reactor.
http://www.world-nuclear.org/informatio ... ement.aspx

"Advanced electrometallurgical reprocessing which removes uranium, plutonium and minor actinides together for recycling in a fast reactor. The wastes then only need 300 years to reach the same level of radioactivity as the original ore. This is not yet operational on any commercial scale."

Soooo....I then went to find what that actually meant in English, because I didn't really understand what was going on....... :D
http://www.ne.anl.gov/pdfs/12_Pyroproce ... 5B6%5D.pdf

Argonne National Laboratory pioneered the development of pyrochemical processing,or pyroprocessing, a high-temperature method of recycling reactor waste into fuel. When used in conjunction with nuclear fast reactors, pyroprocessing would:
1) Allow 100 times more of the energy in uranium ore to be used to produce electricity compared to current commercial reactors.
2) Ensure almost inexhaustible supplies of low-cost uranium resources.
3) Minimize the risk that used fuel would be used for weapons production by recycling the uranium and transuranics to fast reactors for energy production.
4) Markedly reduce both the amount of waste and the time it must be isolated—from approximately 300,000 to approximately 300 years—by recycling all actinides.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Gord » Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:58 am

Natural nuclear reactor.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yS53AA_WaUk
A bit dumbed down in spots, and also a bit that I don't get at all ("neutrons going too fast to hit another atom?") but still interesting.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:07 am

There was an article on Oklo in Scientific American some years ago. Two billion years ago, there was more uranium 235 on planet Earth than there is now, and if some natural process concentrated the uranium, it could undergo fission in the same way a modern reactor does.

I am not enormously knowledgeable about quantum physics, and definitely not about how it affects nuclear fission, but as I understand it, for a moving neutron to strike another nucleus and cause it to split, it must be going at the correct speed. Not too fast and not too slow.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Matthew Ellard » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:48 am

Lance Kennedy wrote:Two billion years ago, there was more uranium 235 on planet Earth than there is now, and if some natural process concentrated the uranium, it could undergo fission in the same way a modern reactor does.


Uranium 235 is unstable and has a half life and devolves to Lead 207.

I don't think it could "blow up" on its own if simply concentrated. The old atom bombs require normal explosives to massively increase pressure. However, this is getting beyond my skill level.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Gord » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:56 am

Matthew Ellard wrote:
Lance Kennedy wrote:Two billion years ago, there was more uranium 235 on planet Earth than there is now, and if some natural process concentrated the uranium, it could undergo fission in the same way a modern reactor does.


Uranium 235 is unstable and has a half life and devolves to Lead 207.

I don't think it could "blow up" on its own if simply concentrated. The old atom bombs require normal explosives to massively increase pressure. However, this is getting beyond my skill level.
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Nuclear reactors don't blow up either.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:59 am

Matthew

A Natural reactor does not 'blow up'. In fact, it ends up as a very slow reactor, emitting heat at levels well below that of a human made nuclear power station. All that is needed is for enough fissionable material, generally uranium 235, to be concentrated in one place.

The knowledge of these things psses off the idiots no end. They generally have the naturalistic fallacy as part of their belief system. Natural good, unnatural bad. They regard nuclear reactors to be bad, meaning they cannot be natural. But they were!

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Matthew Ellard » Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:12 am

Sorry. I misunderstood Lance's earlier post and though he meant blow up like a bomb. I now realise he means release heat from normal decay.

Whoops!
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby ElectricMonk » Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:52 am

The Earth core is a nuclear reactor. Of course these processes happen naturally.

But that has nothing to do with the fact that nuclear power everywhere was rushed through with massive government subsidies for prestige reasons, mostly, without taking care of the long-term problems.
Worldwide, plenty of plants have gone offline, their owners no longer in business, leaving the taxpayers with the costs of cleanup and waste storage.
If the pro-nuclear crowd wasn't so dogmatic in proclaiming that none of that matters I might take them seriously; but as it is, they excuse gross negligence in planning and executing the final steps in the lifetime of nuclear power plants, which is why reactors are kept running long past their lifetime.
We "anti-nuclear people"have been waiting 50 years for a permanent solution for radioactive waste under a number of governments, none of which have delivered.
Are we really going to wait another 50 and continue to pretend that the golden solution is just around the corner?
A moratorium on all new reactors until we actually have a plan is not only rational, it is way overdue.
I've come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:
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2. Anything that's invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:27 am

EM

No one is suggesting 'none of this matters'.
Nuclear power, like all forms of generating electricity, has its problems. However, they are different problems. Nuclear power, for example, does not have the problem of generating greenhouse gases like coal and gas burners. It does not have the problem of flooding vast areas of wilderness, like hydro-electric. It does not have the problem of massive fluctuations in output like wind and solar. And that is the tip of the iceberg in relation to problems associated with those technologies.

You say that anti-nuclear people have been waiting 50 years for a permanent solution to nuclear waste. Well, the reason for no permanent solution is you anti-nuclear people, who kick up such a stink at each and every proposal that nothing happens. Bluntly, it is your bloody fault!

There are a number of perfectly satisfactory permanent solutions, ranging from recycling waste, to dissolving waste, to vitrifying waste, to deep burial. But you anti-nuclear people stop each and every one being applied. It is your group who should be ashamed.

It is people like you and Bobbo, who say 'none of this matters' in relation to the other generating systems, who have got it all out of balance.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby ElectricMonk » Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:07 am

LK, if Bobbo and I can prevent a permanent solution to nuclear waste to be implemented, then Nuclear Power is on even shakier round than I realized. You really think the Anti-nuclear movement is particularly strong or organized?
It isn't.
What's happening is that people everywhere, be they pro- or anti, don't want nuclear waste anywhere near them, and lobby their representatives hard to stop it: this is less a question of ideology and more of long-term real estate value.
You are making the same argument as Trump-Wall supporters who say that it can be build easily if just all the affected people would pack up and leave.
Don't kid yourself that "the ignorant" are the problem, not when the problem persists for 3 generations.

At the start of the nuclear age, people were enthusiastic about it, and the the Cold War would have made it easy to create secret storage facilities. But the Nuclear Lobby either couldn't do it or didn't care, since that would have just meant drawing attention to the unsolved problem.

Contrary to what you want to believe, this is only superficially a "pro" vs. "anti" issue. There are real physically challenges with finding a place that is safe for millennia, which is why the idea of the best possible storage has shifted significantly over the years.
Take the plan of Germany for a permanent storage facility, which used a former salt-mine everyone at the time considered perfect. Now they have to spend billions to empty up the place again, because ground-water contamination is possible.
Please take a step back and consider that all you are proposing are untested concepts, which will take decades of monitoring to test for safety. And based on that , you propose we produce more waste because you fully trust that we will find the right solution in time, if only Bobbo and I would let you.
Pardon me for wanting to have a tested solution in place now before continuing producing waste that will persist for all of human eternity after being promised one for 50 years.
I've come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:
Spoiler:
1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
2. Anything that's invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:24 am

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of ... wer_groups

EM

When you suggest the antinuclear movement is not strong, you are totally and completely wrong. The reference above is a list of organisations opposing nuclear power, and it includes major international groups like Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth. They have incredible political power. They often dictate policy to national governments.

The disposal methods that could be used as a long term solution to dealing with nuclear waste are not poorly thought out or untested. On the contrary, nuclear nations have been pondering and testing methods for the past 50 odd years. The problem is, and always has been, political. Idiots not permitting rational systems to be put in place.

Of course, with some of the anti-nuclear organisations, it is not always idiocy. The more powerful such groups are simply playing a power game. And money. The central committee running Greenpeace International, for example, all earn salaries in the hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. This level of money and power is massively corrupting, and the motives of such groups in opposing nuclear energy, when it is one of the world's greatest hopes for opposing global warming, is highly suspect, to say the least!

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Apr 23, 2017 8:59 am

Nukes vs No Nukes.

Pro vs Con.

Ha, ha.........even the basic facts cannot be agreed on. Looks like the disagreement will last as long as the nuclear waste does......... and for the same reasons.

I would like to see any link to a "proven storage" technology though. I mean........... proof is proof. Who will stand against proven technology?
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:16 am

Bobbo

It has been PROVEN that nuclear waste can be stored in a warehouse for decades and cause no harm. After all, that is what is being done.

You would have to be a total deadhead to assume that storage in an underground repository is going to do more harm.

As I have pointed out before, nuclear energy is the safest of all major methods of generating electricity. That is in terms of deaths per unit electricity generated. To the best of my knowledge, there has not ever been even one death related to the storage or transport of nuclear waste.

Those who warble on about how unsafe it all is, are doing so in the total absence of good data.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:19 am

Lance: so, you have NO EXAMPLE/PROOF of storage technology for pu-239 that will last for 500K years?

............unless you mean just dumping it into the ocean? BUT even that is not "proven safe" in any sense of the word.

Slight recap: Matt informs us that pu-239 can be made safe in 300 years if it is used as a fuel for a new generation of Nuke reactors. Please note that I suggested that such Nuke Reactors should be built and used EVEN IF ECONOMICALLY NOT VIABLE, just to remove that waste. Yeah...I know....its "ME" that is the extremist here.

Looks to me we do have "the answer" to the Nuke Issue and it is politics stopping it from happening. What should happen?.....Removal of Nuke Waste to agreed upon safe locations with an adoption of Green Energy asap. As basica English escapes so many, asap includes using Nuke as a transition but not as a vested long term source. SOLAR ENERGY..... is properly sized to accommodate the non-productive times and places. I very much favor hydrogen gas/liquid storage and transfer and use as a basic fuel in place of oil/coal.

Nuke is not needed. Fossil Fuels are not needed. That is the tech age we need to adopt: ASAP. (((Yes...ASAP means gubment artificial supports and encouragement over asap which means only market forces as they variously play out.)))
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby Lance Kennedy » Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:58 am

Bobbo

The idea of no nukes and no fossil fuels at any cost is just too savage. It is a variation on your hair shirt philosophy of environmentalism. I disagree.

Humans matter. Human welfare matters. Giving people food and housing, and all the things they need really does matter. Making enormous sacrifices in order to avoid nuclear power, and to avoid using fossil fuels carries too high a price.

Neither is necessary. Replacing fossil fuels is an excellent long term goal, but it needs to be done in a managed and careful way. The first priority is to work on eliminating coal, which delivers the highest burden of greenhouse gases per unit energy released. Oil and gas delivers twice as much energy per gigatonne of CO2 emitted. So replacing the coal with oil and gas will halve the emissions. But half of all electricity on planet Earth is produced by coal burning power stations. We cannot simply use solar or wind power to replace it. Even gas would be inadequate. So the only way we can get the kind of steady base load electricity production the world needs is nuclear. Or else we are stuck with coal, and a rapidly warming planet.

Incidentally, saying the plutonium will last half a million year is kinda crazy. The half life is 24,000 years. Within less than 100,000 years, the amount left is one sixteenth. But plutonium is a small part of nuclear waste. Most is much shorter half life isotopes. 10,000 years is enough to reduce the radioactivity to the point where it is seriously unlikely to cause harm. Any number of burial options will keep it out of trouble that long.

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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:11 am

You don't read real too good.
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Re: Bill Nye on nuclear

Postby ElectricMonk » Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:18 am

Anti-Nukes groups are not the same as anti-nuclear power groups.
Neither does the number of groups indicate their political influence.

But the energy sector is huge, has armies of well-paid lobbyists and provides something everyone depends on.
It is flat-out wrong to suggest that the only obstacle to safe long-term storage of radioactive material is due to the political influence of non-governmental groups.

LK, I can't help noticing that you haven't addressed the failure of past storage facilities to adequately provide protection from leaks, etc.

And I find your talk of substances being "unlikely to cause harm" in 10,000 years time to be completely irrelevant: we are humans, not tectonic plates, so these are timescales that simply don't mean anything to us.
I've come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:
Spoiler:
1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
2. Anything that's invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.
- Douglas Adams


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