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Mobile nuclear reactors for U.S. army -‘a COLOSSAL mistake’ – could bring about World War 3

World War 3 news: US military’s mobile nuclear reactor ‘a COLOSSAL mistake’ https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1097564/world-war-3-mobile-battlefield-nuclear-reactor-us-military-nuclear-war

US DEFENCE Department plans to build mobile nuclear reactors capable of powering their battlefield bases could trigger another world war, an eminent scientist has warned.

By TOM FISH,Mar 9, 2019  The US military is fighting wars on at least 11 fronts, from the middle East to Africa. And all that cutting-edge equipment and military personnel can consume vast amounts of energy. But the US Defence Department’s announced intention of building an array of mobile nuclear reactors to power its way to victory has been slammed as incredibly dangerous – and could even trigger another nuclear war.

The US army is keen to end its dependance on fossil fuel deliveries to forward operating bases, situated close to conflict zones.

There would be a significant escalation if a nuclear plant was hit

Dr Edwin Lyman

But Dr Edwin Lyman, the senior global security scientist with the Union of Concerned Scientists, believes swapping to nuclear power is “simply trading one problem for another.”

Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, Dr Lyman said: “The military generally use diesel fuel that has to be trucked in, creating supply vulnerabilities.

“So they would love to have a constant supply of electricity which does not require these frequent shipments.

“And they think nuclear power can provide that.

“But nuclear reactors also require fuel – admittedly not as regularly – but not only would fresh fuel have to be delivered, but after its use it is highly radioactive spent fuel and there is no discussion over what would happen to that.”

The Defence Department has requested tenders for nuclear reactors capable of producing between one and 10 megawatts of electricity, weigh less than 40 tonnes, and can be transported by ship, truck or C-17 aircraft.

And it would have a so-called “inherently safe design”, ensuring a meltdown is physically impossible in various complete failure scenarios.

However, Dr Lyman, a scientist with several decades in the field, believes it is naive to expect a such nuclear reactor to be safe in the middle of a war zone.

He said: “It is foolish for the US Department of Defence to assume there are reactors that cannot meltdown and devastate their bases with radioactivity.

“And if that is what they are looking for, it is a fools errand.”

The nuclear scientist believes these nuclear reactors would be a target for terrorists, and a direct strike could disperse that hazardous radioactive enriched uranium that could damage the safety systems preventing the reactor from melting down.

Dr Lyman said: “I expect in a worst-case scenario you would have an area of many tens of kilometres that could be contaminated to the extent where the land would be unusable without being decontaminated.

“And anyone at the military base at that time would be exposed to potentially lethal doses of radiation.

“So at best it would be a costly mess and at worse it could imperil the mission and the military personnel, and contaminate the area of the base which would affect the inhabitants of the host country.“

The nuclear scientist believes the US military response to such a devastating nuclear attack on its armed forces could trigger a like-foxlike reaction.

“If you bomb a fossil fuel installation it would not be pretty, but there would be a significant escalation if a nuclear plant was hit.

“And so the military would have to respond in kind or with a more devastating response and it could escalate.”

He said: “There could be a number of disadvantages, both to military forces and also to the countries where the reactors would be located.

“The US military could end up leaving a radioactive mess for other countries to deal with.

There is precedent for this, when the US military dropped nuclear weapons off the coast of Spain and in Greenland.

“The US left a radioactive legacy in both countries for decades.

“So there are a lot of factors to consider, and I fear the military has an unrealistic view as to how successful this project is likely to be.”

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March 10, 2019 - Posted by | Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, USA

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