[ExI] Silence in the sky-but why?

John Clark johnkclark at gmail.com
Sat Sep 28 03:40:15 UTC 2013

On Thu, Sep 26, 2013 at 10:23 PM, Andrew Mckee <andymck35 at gmail.com> wrote:

> Sounds like there's a lot to like about them. So why isn't anybody
> building thorium fueled power station(s)?

Even experimental Thorium reactors don't exist today, but they did 40 years
ago, the idea wasn't pursued because they aren't much good for making
Plutonium for bombs, and because they already had reactors that worked
pretty well in submarines and the Navy didn't want to confuse the issue and
dilute resources with something radically new. And because, for reasons
that have nothing to do with science but everything to do with politics and
environmental hysteria, no technology is more resistant to change than
nuclear technology. So instead of rethinking it when in the 1950's they
decided to make huge power plants they just scaled up the small reactors
that worked well in submarines and in making plutonium for bombs to
humongous size. But machines often don't scale well and things that operate
beautifully at one size don't at another.

The end result is not pretty because almost nobody has done any research
into Thorium in over 30 years and we're stuck with clunky very badly
designed reactors that use the wrong damn fuel.

  John K Clark
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