[extropy-chat] Nuke 'em

scerir scerir at libero.it
Thu Oct 27 06:50:03 UTC 2005

From: "Jeff Davis"
> (So it's not just vaporware.)


There has been interest, in the past, in utilising thorium-232
as a nuclear fuel. It is 3 times as abundant as uranium (about
half as abundant as lead) and a high % of the mined thorium
is useable in a reactor.

A thorium reactor would work, more or less, this way (if I remember
well). Th-232 capture a neutron to become Th-233 which decays
to uranium-233, which in turn fissions.

The main problem is that insufficient neutrons are generated
to keep the reaction going. A particle accelerator
would be used to produce neutrons that provoke nuclear

So the reaction is not self sustaining and the machine
needs energy to keep it going (Prof. Rubbia, the inventor,
named it 'energy amplifier').

Because the amount of energy produced is >> the energy put in.

http://einstein.unh.edu/FWHersman/energy_amplifier.html  [Cern]
http://www.nea.fr/html/trw/docs/saturne8/sat15.pdf [prof. Rubbia]

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