Energy 2.0

Next generation nuclear and the best ideas in clean, safe power

Posts by Mark Halper

International schemes hatch to tap nuclear for industrial heat

One of the most compelling reasons for the nuclear industry to start building novel reactors is that alternative designs could broaden nuclear’s clean energy appeal well beyond electricity generation and into a source of CO2-free heat that powers industrial processes. Nuclear could usher in tremendous environmental improvements if it were to replace the CO2-spewing fossil fuels that fire up steel and cement furnaces, and that process and refine materials like

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Nuclear’s powerful punch should wallop fossil fuels – take it from a renowned oil man

Over recent months, this blog has delivered nuclear industry news noting among other things the bustling growth of reactor construction in China, the percolating activity in non-traditionally nuclear regions of the world like Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Africa, and the emerging British interest in small reactors. In today’s installment, we will take a breather from current affairs and instead opt for a little pro-nuclear history lesson. A nuclear

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China, Canada jointly ratchet up thorium, alternative fuels for CANDU reactors

Once again, leave it to China to demonstrate that the future of nuclear could well reside in reactor technologies that are notably different from the conventional reactors that have defined the industry forever. And in China’s most recent example, throw in another country that itself is emerging as a leader in alternative nuclear: Canada. State and private-sector entities from the two countries in late July signed a memorandum of understanding

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ExxonMobil: Nuclear power will double

Let’s start this week’s blog with a quiz. Identify the source of this global prediction: “By 2040, we expect that the use of nuclear power will approximately double.” Is it: a) a leading utility; b) a large nuclear company; c) one of those growing crop of greenies clamoring for nuclear to help staunch the spewing of environmentally ruinous carbon dioxide (we like those folks here at Energy 2.0); d) a

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UK prepared to regulate small modular reactors

The time it would take to approve and license a small modular reactor in the UK would be no longer than the time it takes with a conventional large reactor, the country’s’ chief nuclear inspector assured Parliament this week. The testimony from Andy Hall, chief nuclear inspector at the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR), should allay concerns that the regulator might be ill-prepared to review SMR applications. Regulatory processes in

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Experts to Parliament: Small reactors can boost UK nuclear 

Industrial electricity users who want to reduce their reliance on the grid and on volatile fossil fuels could install small modular nuclear reactors on their site to ensure a constant electricity supply, an expert has advised a UK Parliamentary committee that is investigating the potential uses for alternative nuclear power in Britain. The novel reactors would thus help significantly increase nuclear electricity’s share of the country’s energy mix said the

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Alternative reactors go to Parliament

Small, alternative reactors could open up British nuclear power to entirely new uses such as district heating and hydrogen production, and thus buoy the country’s efforts to meet mandatory carbon reduction goals. So testified experts backed by Rolls-Royce, by utilities and even by the fossil fuel industry when asked by a Parliamentary committee about the potential for small modular reactors (SMRs). “We look at the question in the context of

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Nuclear will keep the home fires burning in China

In recent blogs, we’ve pointed out how nuclear reactor companies are turning to seemingly unlikely geographies for growth. Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Africa and South America – hardly traditional nuclear markets – look set to help revive the nuclear renaissance that stalled following the meltdowns at Japan’s Fukushima plant in March, 2011. We’ve also noted that China and its state-owned reactor companies are among the nuclear purveyors chasing business

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China steps up nuclear ties with Arab world

Welcome to the new growth curve of nuclear power: While developed countries like Germany, Japan and the U.S. either walk away or dither over their commitment to atomic energy, non-Western and developing nations are turning to it in droves, often tapping Russia, China and the East as their provider.

UK government-industry body seeks proposals for alternative nuclear

A key low carbon public-private British investment group that includes oil and turbine companies BP, Shell, Rolls-Royce and Caterpillar is casting its net into nuclear, seeking proposals for alternative reactors that depart from conventional designs and that could serve as a source of both electricity and heat. The request for proposals (RFP) from the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) marks a widening of the group’s interests beyond the renewables and fossil-fuel

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