The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

France desperate to sell its flawed nuclear technology to India, Time for India to cancel Jaitapur nuclear power project.

Time for India to cancel Jaitapur nuclear power project, France keen on flogging its ‘messy’ tech to India Business May 2, 2021  By Ranvir Nayar Media India Group France remains desperate to sell its severely troubled EPR nuclear reactors to India, even though its own project at home and at both the sites outside of France have had severe cost and time overruns and continue to face safety issues.

On March 3, 2021, Electricité de France, EDF, the sole operator of nuclear power plants in France, informed the country’s nuclear safety body, Autorité de Sûreté Nucléaire (ASN), of a design anomaly on three nozzles of the main primary system of the European Pressurised Reactor that it has been building at Flamanville in north-west France.

The design flaw is serious as the main primary system contains water used to cool the reactor core and transfer energy from the nuclear reaction to the steam generators. The design dates back to 2006 and the nozzles were manufactured in 2011.

May 6, 2021 Posted by | France, India, marketing | Leave a comment

Despite the problems, small nuclear reactor salesmen aggressively marketing: it’s make or break time for the nuclear industry.

Entrepreneurs Look to Small-Scale Nuclear Reactors,   The American Society of Mechanical Engineers,  Mar 2, 2021, by Michael Abrams  ‘‘……… even concepts that are predicated on being small, modular, and fast to build seem locked into decades-long development cycles.

The key to reviving the nuclear power industry  is building these small reactors not as projects, but as factory-made products. That’s easier said than done. “Usually, a bunch of nuclear engineers go in a room and then they come out after a year or two, and they have a design that doesn’t have a lot of foundation in realty, and nobody can make it, and the projects dies,” said Kurt Terrani, a senior staff scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory………..

In terms of reactor physics, the NuScale concept is fairly bog standard: low-enriched uranium, light-water cooling. In essence, their reactor is just a smaller version of the nuclear plants already in operation. That NuScale didn’t go with a more revolutionary design to mitigate waste or utilize an alternative fuel cycle is no accident. To do so would require the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to come up with an entirely new licensing framework, said José Reyes, cofounder and chief technology officer at NuScale.

“Pressurized water-cooled reactors have benefited from billions of dollars of research and development and millions of hours of operating experience over the past 50 year,” Reyes said. “NuScale went with a more traditional approach to assure a design that is cost-competitive and capable of near-term deployment.”

…………. The containment vessel will also sit underground in a giant pool capable of absorbing radiation from a leak. Multiple reactors would share the same pool. Being underground, they are also earthquake- and airplane-resistant. [ Ed. no mention of what would happen in the case of flooding, or of an emergency requirinfpeople to quickly respond underground] The company believes that its design is robust enough that utilities could site the reactors much closer to population centers, rather than in remote locations surrounded by an emergency planning zone.

So far, the concept and design have been convincing enough to win funding from the DoE and to move NuScale farther along in the regulatory process than any of its would-be competitors.

“NuScale’s small modular reactor technology is the world’s first and only to undergo design certification review by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission,”
NuScale set out to design a reactor that was small enough to transport to site, essentially complete. Not everyone agrees, however, that building out a power plant in 60-MW modules is optimal.

“The whole idea of SMRs is that smaller is better,” said Jacopo Buongiorno, a professor of nuclear science and engineering at MIT and the director of the Center for Advanced Nuclear Energy Systems. “But within the class of small reactors, larger is still better.  If you can design a reactor that is still simple, that  is still passively safe, that can still be built in a factory, but that generates 300 megawatts, that for sure is going to be more economically attractive than the same thing that generates 60 megawatts.”

Buongiorno points to GE’s BWRX-300 concept as a potentially better option. It, too, is a light-water reactor with fuel rods and passive cooling. But its larger size makes it a more of a plug-and-play replacement for coal plants……
Holtec’s SMR-160 is intended to be installed deep underground; the steel containment vessel is strong enough to keep the core covered during any conceivable disaster. “
…… Other SMR designs are dispensing with solid fuel altogether. These reactors would instead dissolve uranium in a molten salt. Some of these designs are miniaturized versions of the Molten Salt Reactor Experiment built by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in the late 1960s………
The one downside to molten salt reactors is that the salts usually contain fluoride, which is extremely corrosive. Simplifying the mechanical design of the cooling system cuts down on the parts in danger of corroding, but the pins that will contain the fuel are still at risk…..

Make or Break for Nuclear

Moltex is aiming for build costs at around $2,000 per kW—more than wind or solar, but less than newly built coal or gas plants, let alone competing nuclear concepts. “We’ve believe we’ve come up with a concept that can radically reduce the cost of nuclear power,” ……

Other SMR companies are less aggressive with their cost estimates—NuScale has its scopes on a cost of around $3,600 per kW, while GE is aiming for less than $2,500—but still come in under conventional nuclear power. …….
Proof of whether those costs can be achieved will be actual construction and commissioning. “This decade will be very telling,” said Chicago’s Rosner. “It’s the make or break decade for nuclear.”
Furthest along is NuScale, which in September 2020 announced its SMR design had been issued a standard design approval from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. That means the design can be referenced in an application for a construction permit—a big step, and one that had not been before achieved by a small modular reactor design. In August 2020, the NRC had completed its Phase 6 review and issued a Final Safety Evaluation Report (FSER).
The company also announced in November that it had uprated its Power Module to 77 MW, which should improve its economics by around 25 percent….

March 6, 2021 Posted by | 2 WORLD, marketing, Reference, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors | Leave a comment

Another bit of boring nuclear propaganda – from Morocco this time


A straight handout from the nuclear lobby? Of course! Not a word about the costs. Not a word

Christina Macpherson’s websites & blogs

about safety, environmental issues. Not a word about the problem of radioactive trash produced. And, of course – no mention that medical radioisotopes can now be made safely and efficiently in non nuclear cyclotrons  

Morocco, Hungary Sign Agreement On Nuclear Energy Cooperation.     The agreement boosts bilateral cooperation in scientific and academic research.    By Sanae Alouazen, Jan 20, 2021  Rabat- Morocco’s National Center for Nuclear Energy, Science and Technology (CNESTEN) and the Hungarian Center for Energy Research signed a cooperation agreement on Tuesday.  The agreement aims to strengthen cooperation between the two research centers in the field of nuclear energy…….

January 21, 2021 Posted by | AFRICA, marketing | Leave a comment

Russia marketing small nuclear reactors to the Arctic , (who cares about the toxic wastes?)

Rosatom to build small-scale land-based Arctic nuclear plant by 2028

Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom said Thursday that it has reached another milestone in its plans to build a small-scale land-based nuclear plant near the community of Ust-Kuyga in the eastern Russian Arctic. Barents Observer, Radio Canada International 
December 25, 2020, By Levon Sevunts 

Rosatom said it has reached an agreement with the government of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) setting out parameters for pricing energy that will be produced by the nuclear plant, which is expected to be completed by 2028……….

“I am convinced that a small-scale nuclear power plant will give a qualitative impetus to the development of the Arctic regions of Yakutia, stimulate the development of industry in Ust-Yansky ulus and improve the living standards of local residents,” said in a statement Head of the Sakha Republic Aysen Nikolayev.

The nuclear plant is expected to operate for 60 years but the press release did not specify how Rosatom plans to deal with the nuclear waste produced by it.

Rosatom officials said the small-scale nuclear plant is based on a proven technology that has already been tested in Arctic conditions.

RITM-200 reactors are already being used on the recently commissioned Arktika nuclear-powered icebreaker and six other 22220 design heavy Russian icebreakers that are being built, Rosatom officials said…….

“The implementation of this project strengthens the leading position of Rosatom in the world market of small nuclear power plants.”…….

Rosatom is also actively marketing the technology for export overseas, Likhachev said.

December 26, 2020 Posted by | ARCTIC, marketing, Russia, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors | Leave a comment

Marketing nuclear technology to Slovakia

Mochovce new-build project receives loan boost, WNN, 24 December 2020

Italy’s Enel has announced that its subsidiary Enel Produzione and the Czech company Energetický a Průmyslový Holding (EPH) have agreed to a provide additional loans for the completion of Mochovce 3 and 4 in the Slovak Republic, and altered the terms for EPH to eventually buy out Enel’s stake in Slovenské elektrárne. They and EP Slovakia BV have signed a new agreement that modifies some of the terms and conditions of the 2015 contract concerning the sale of the stake held by Enel Produzione in the Slovak utility…….

Construction on the two Mochovce units was restarted in 2008 and aimed at having both units in operation by 2013, at a total cost of EUR2.8 billion. This was increased at the start of this month to about EUR6.2 billion. Fuel loading at unit 3 is expected by April 2021 and at unit 4 in 2023. ……….

December 26, 2020 Posted by | EUROPE, marketing | Leave a comment

Russia keenly marketing nuclear technology to Bolivia

December 26, 2020 Posted by | marketing, Russia, SOUTH AMERICA | Leave a comment

European Commission approves Romania’s purchase of nuclear reactors

November 26, 2020 Posted by | EUROPE, marketing | Leave a comment

USA looks to get $18billion now, maybe $40billion later, in flogging off nuclear reactors to Poland

November 17, 2020 Posted by | EUROPE, marketing, USA | Leave a comment

NuScam pushing to sell its ”small” nuclear reactors to South Africa

S. Africa Regulator to Consider Approving Nuclear Power Plan,  Bloomberg, By Antony Sguazzin,10 November 2020,
    •  Program envisages addition of 2,500 megawatts of atomic power
    •  Country’s renewable-energy lobby opposes expansion of industry

The National Energy Regulator of South Africa will on Nov. 11 consider approving the procurement of 2,500 megawatts of nuclear power, marking another step toward the expansion of the industry.

The regulator will consider approving a so-called section 34 determination for the program, which enables the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy to undertake a bidding process for private producers to build nuclear-power facilities, it said in a Twitter posting outlining the agenda for the meeting.

South Africa, which destroyed its atomic weapons prior to the end of apartheid, already operates Africa’s only nuclear-power plant, the 1,800 megawatt Koeberg facility in Cape Town, as well as the Pelindaba research facility north of Johannesburg.

While the expansion of nuclear power has the support of the ministry and labor unions, it’s opposed by environmentalists and backers of the country’s expanding renewable-energy program.

NuScale Power LLC, a U.S. nuclear-energy firm, has said it will propose small, modular reactors for installation in South Africa. The U.S. International Development Finance Corp. has announced that it will support a bid by NuScale, approving the procurement of 2,500 megawatts of nuclear power, marking another step toward the expansion of the industry.

The regulator will consider approving a so-called section 34 determination for the program, which enables the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy to undertake a bidding process for private producers to build nuclear-power facilities, it said in a Twitter posting outlining the agenda for the meeting.

South Africa, which destroyed its atomic weapons prior to the end of apartheid, already operates Africa’s only nuclear-power plant, the 1,800 megawatt Koeberg facility in Cape Town, as well as the Pelindaba research facility north of Johannesburg.

While the expansion of nuclear power has the support of the ministry and labor unions, it’s opposed by environmentalists and backers of the country’s expanding renewable-energy program.

November 10, 2020 Posted by | marketing, South Africa | Leave a comment

Rolls Royce and Exelon get together to market ‘small’ nuclear reactors


November 10, 2020 Posted by | marketing, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, UK | Leave a comment

U.S and Russia battling it out to market new nuclear reactors to Eastern Europe countries


China and Russia lead world ranking for supplying new nuclear reactors, Bloomberg, 9 Nov 20, Source: UxC ResearchThe former Cold War frontier of eastern Europe is becoming a battleground in the $500 billion business of building nuclear power plants.

Four months after lifting a prohibition on financing nuclear-energy deals overseas, the U.S. is finding an opening for companies such as General Electric Co., Westinghouse Electric Co. and Bechtel Group Inc.

In the span of a few weeks, the U.S. signed a memorandum with Romania for the financing of a new reactor and other accords with Poland as well as Bulgaria, which plans to revive an older reactor project.

The plan to win business for U.S. companies in this geopolitically key market started under Donald Trump is poised to survive the transition to a new U.S. administration under President-elect Joe Biden. That may nudge eastern European partners to move forward with stalled nuclear projects.

Greater access to financing may be the chief advantage on the American side as it pushes back against Russian and Chinese interests in the region.

“The projects in countries such as Romania, Bulgaria and Poland could be accelerated if the U.S. helps them come up with funding sources at competitive costs and, eventually, without the need for state aid or guarantees,” said Razvan Nicolescu, a Bucharest-based partner at Deloitte specializing in the energy industry.

Eastern European nations, which are dependent on fossil fuels from Russia and their own coal deposits, have even more reasons than others to seek nuclear options. Being subject to stringent European Union emissions standards also creates additional incentives.

The recent change in regulation is allowing the U.S. to compete for a larger share of the market, whose value it estimates at $500 billion-$740 billion over the next 10 years.

Barriers to expansion remain formidable.

Westinghouse, which was one of the leading nuclear industry suppliers in the U.S., went bankrupt in 2017 as it faced billions in potential liabilities related to domestic projects in Georgia and South Carolina. After the South Carolina project was canceled in 2017, the two at Southern Co.’s Plant Vogtle remained the only reactors under construction in the world using Westinghouse’s flagship AP1000 technology, though that is also behind schedule and over budget.

Political rhetoric may prevail over actual investment decisions, said Martin Vladimirov, an analyst at the Sofia-based Center for the Study of Democracy.

“While the U.S. seeks to counter Russian and Chinese economic interference, those projects may not follow the market logic and will need significant state support,” Vladimirov said.

Nuclear Love Affair in Europe’s Poorer East Is Hitting the Rocks

Russia doesn’t see current U.S. nuclear deals in Europe as a threat to its flagship Rosatom Corp. because the U.S. companies don’t have the bandwidth to build new plants now, a government official close to Russia’s nuclear industry said. The U.S. projects in Europe will likely be limited to servicing agreements, the official added, asking for anonymity as they’re not authorized to speak publicly.

State-owned Rosatom itself also played down the risk from increased competition, saying there’s room for many projects in the region.

“We believe that the U.S. nuclear sector has a great potential,” Rosatom said. “The most important thing now for the U.S. vendors is to grow skills by building more in the markets where they have presence and experience.”

Romania’s need to refurbish an existing reactor makes it the most likely candidate to tap U.S. funding or start work with backing from the U.S., Canada and France. There are bigger doubts over the economics and political will behind the nuclear push announced by Poland and Bulgaria.

Some have stuck by Russia as their main technological and financing partner, such as Hungary for its 10 billion-euro ($12 billion) nuclear expansion deal, though GE will get a chance to supply turbines there.

Others have turned away from the long-standing deals with Russia and rebuffed newer attempts by China to step in as financier and supplier.

Funding will be the key determinant whether these projects can get off the ground, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Elchin Mammadov.

“It’s a very risky and expensive venture that is unlikely to be funded by anyone but the state,” Mammadov said.

Even with state backing, most of the projects flagged across eastern Europe may face years of delay and many may be eventually abandoned.
Russia and China have an edge because they offer package deals. The U.S. is “entirely absent” from the global new build reactor market, the U.S. Energy Department said in an April report.

The U.S. has “lost its competitive global position as the world leader in nuclear energy,” the American department concluded.

— With assistance by Will Wade, Zoltan Simon, Maciej Martewicz, Daryna Krasnolutska, Stepan Kravchenko, and Zoe Schneeweiss

November 10, 2020 Posted by | marketing, Russia, USA | Leave a comment

France trying to market nuclear reactors to Romania

World Nuclear News 27th Oct 2020, France and Romania have signed a declaration of intent on cooperation in
the civil nuclear field, which aims, among other things, to work “with
strategic partners” to build units 3 and 4 of the Cernavoda nuclear power
plant and to upgrade unit 1. The document was signed yesterday by French
Prime Minister Jean Castex and his Romanian counterpart Ludovic Orban, who
led a delegation of his ministers to Paris.

October 29, 2020 Posted by | France, marketing | Leave a comment

Trump’s USA is pushing NuScale’s small nuclear reactors for South Africa

The US nuclear company with an eye on South Africa  just got a R23 billion boost, courtesy of Donald Trump,    Phillip de Wet , Business Insider SA Oct 22, 2020, 

  • American nuclear energy company NuScale has been citing Cape Town as an example of an ideal customer for its still-theoretical generators.
  • It has now received in-principle financial support from the American government to build a nuclear power station in South Africa.
  • NuScale’s pathfinder project for its new technology, in Idaho, just got a promise of an infusion of US government cash worth some R23 billion.
  • While South Africa abandoned plans to create next-generation PBMR systems, the administration of Donald Trump has pushed small-scale nuclear development.

NuScale, a company with roots in US-funded research, this week received assurances that the American government will provide up to $1.4 billion (around R23 billion) in subsidies for a 12-module reactor it hopes to start building in Idaho by 2025.

The project is a commercial one, with municipal buyers lined up for the electricity, but the cash from the US department of energy is intended to bring the cost of that electricity down to $55 per MWh on a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) basis, making the project at least vaguely competitive with other forms of power generation.

Without the subsidies, the supposedly once-off cost of building a first-of-its kind power station would make the NuScale project commercially unviable, its planned customers say.

Just how once-off such costs are, and how much money the US government ends up actually spending on the project, will be closely watched in South Africa

Last week the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) announced it had signed a letter of intent to support NuScale “to develop 2,500 MW of nuclear energy in South Africa”.

NuScale has cited Cape Town as a purely theoretical customer for a 12-module version of its nuclear energy system, saying that such an installation could desalinate enough water to keep the entire city going.

But the 2,500MW number cited by the DFC suggests its South African ambitions are substantial. That is the full generating capability the South African government now envisages adding to the national grid from nuclear stations – but the government plan calls for a mixture of the conventional pressurised water reactors (PWRs) such as Russia’s Rosatom sells, and the type of small modular reactors (SMRs) NuScale is developing.

By seeking development finance for the full 2,500MW, NuScale appears to be signalling a plan to bid for the whole thing, rather than seeking to build only part of a new set of nuclear generators in SA alongside companies from China or elsewhere.

That matches the aggressive posture of the US government under the administration of Donald Trump. The DFC letter of intent is the first time the organisation has supported any nuclear project; a ban on its involvement in nuclear energy was lifted on the recommendation of a working group formed by the White House.

The state funding for the NuScale project in the US, meanwhile, comes after consistent and determined efforts under Trump’s presidency to “revitalise” nuclear energy in America, both in production and through research and development on next-generation systems.

South Africa, though determined to buy new nuclear power stations, has not had a similar political appetite to invest in research. In 2010 it mothballed work on the pebble bed modular reactor, a project launched in the late 1990s to create a safe, small, modular reactor system for both domestic use and sale abroad.

Russia once thought it had a done deal to build new nuclear reactors in South Africa. Half a decade later, thanks to its sheer political weight, China seems to be a serious contender for the job. Both France and South Korea have, at various points, been in the running too.

But as of this week, an American company with no track record of actually building commerical nuclear reactors yet is lining up the kind of money from the US government that could make its plans for South Africa viable – replacing a dream of home-grown next-generation nuclear with an imported version.

As of this year there are still vague plans to revive the project, in one form or another, but even if those were to succeed, the pace of development would have to be improbably fast for it to have any place in South Africa’s current round of explorations.

October 24, 2020 Posted by | marketing, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, South Africa | Leave a comment

$40 billion cost to Poland for nuclear power – $18 billion to USA for starters

Poland Strikes $18 Billion Nuclear Power Deal With U.S.   Oil Price, By Charles Kennedy – Oct 20, 2020, The United States and Poland closed a nuclear power deal potentially worth $18 billion as the Central European country seeks to reduce its reliance on coal and Russian natural gas……….

The agreement closed this week stipulates that over the next 18 months, the parties will develop a program for the construction of the reactors and how they will be financed. Per plans, the first reactors should come online in 2033. The whole program could end up costing Warsaw some $40 billion, of which at least $18 billion would go towards acquiring U.S. nuclear technology, according to a U.S. government official…….

October 22, 2020 Posted by | EUROPE, marketing, USA | Leave a comment

USA aiming to beat Russia, China etc, in marketing nuclear reactors to Poland

October 20, 2020 Posted by | EUROPE, marketing, USA | Leave a comment