Another round of good news about nuclear energy. Serious efforts to get reactors built continue to make progress. It is fashionable among green groups and others who have utopian visions of a low tech post industrial society to say that nuclear energy is finished as a result of the Fukushima crisis. This is dead wrong.
This past week, Will Davis has noted a number of places on the internet (mostly those spewing anti-nuclear vitriol) which are asserting that the facts about what is going on at Fukushima Daiichi are being suppressed. This could not be any further from the case, and he’ll prove it.
Radioactive Wolves, the first episode of the 30th season of PBS’s Nature, documents current conditions in the area that was forcibly evacuated following the uncontrolled radioactive material releases caused when the operators at the Chernobyl nuclear power station conducted a poorly planned experiment and blew up their power plant.
In the absence of human beings, the remaining creatures seem to be doing just fine. Rod believes that is because it is hard to teach animals to be afraid of radiation; they do not watch many scary movies or news programs.
“The Rally for Vermont Yankee: At the Plant Gates During the Refueling Outage” describes a rally of appreciation for the people at Vermont Yankee. The rally received good coverage in the local press. Participants ranged in age from 4 to 92 years. A good time was had by all.
5. Nextbigfuture – MIT Energy series complains about nuclear power using a lot of concrete but wind power uses over 4 times more concrete per megawatt.
6. Nextbigfuture – A smartphone can be turned into a radiation detector with a downloaded app. Cameras lens, including CMOS sensors, found on most smartphones, are not only sensitive to visible light but also to other types of waves including Gamma and X waves emitted by radioactive sources. Covering the camera with something opaque (electrician tape, thumb of the user …) the lens no longer capture visible light but only Gamma and X waves. Then, the application algorithm counts the number of impacts received and translates into a value in microsieverts per hour.
7. Nextbigfuture – China loaded the fuel for what will be their 15th operational reactor. Other Russian and chinese reactors are on track for startup in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014
8. Nukepowertalk – Gail Marcus summarizes a presentation Anthony Pietrangelo, Senior VP and CNO of the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) made to the Washington, DC section of the American Nuclear Society (ANS). The presentation provided a very positive account of the pro-active work of the industry, and of the continuing progress at NRC on license renewals, power uprates, and activities related to new reactors.