ANS Friday Nuclear Matinee 2/1: Vogtle Timeline Update

Friday-Nuclear-Matinee

Our latest ANS Nuclear Cafe Matinee film is the latest video update by Southern Company on the progress of the Vogtle nuclear plant expansion.  This video runs just over seven minutes and brings you the details of the construction as of the last quarter of 2018.  Enjoy!

President Signs Pro-Nuclear Legislation

Looking Back: A Brief History of CONTE

The accident that occurred at Three Mile Island on March 28, 1979, brought about many changes to the nuclear industry. Among the changes was the industry stopping to reflect on current procedures and the training of its employees. Exhorted by the findings of the Kemeny Commission and sponsored by the Department of Energy, industry leaders and training personnel began meeting on improvements to training at the Gatlinburg Conference in the early 1980's.

Listen: ANS Member Dr. Christopher Morrison on Space Radiation & More

TheSpaceShowANS member Dr. Christopher Morrison was a recent guest on The Space Show. Dr. Morrison covered space radiation, lifetime radiation limitations, legal limits, rodent GCR and radiation experimentation, terrestrial radiation simulations, space nuclear power & propulsion, super-cooling conductivity.

Nuclear Plant Construction Delay and Cost 3

Reactor vessel delivered to Calvert Cliffs; from brochure in Will Davis collection.

The year 1971 saw a continuation of the general trend of rising capital costs for all types of power plants, described by the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) in its publication for 1971 as having "risen rather rapidly."  According to the AEC, the aggregate major causes for the increases in costs specific to nuclear electric power plants were as follows, with author's analysis accompanying each:

National Nuclear Science Week 2018 Kicks Off

Navigating Nuclear with Bob Fine and Dr. Eric Loewen

Advancing Nuclear: Paths to the Future

"How do we move nuclear energy into the future?" was the question asked and answered in a variety of ways during a fascinating speakers' session that followed this morning's opening plenary.  Several expert speakers in a variety of fields provided frank and illuminating commentary on the condition of nuclear now, and on the things that have to change for nuclear energy to be vibrant in the decades to come.

PGSFR: An Advanced Fuel Cycle and Power Solution for Korea

by Will Davis; information for this report obtained both from the 2016 ANS Annual Meeting session on Prototype Gen-IV Reactors and from representatives of the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI), its subsidiary Sodium-cooled Fast Reactor Development Agency (SFRA), KEPCO Engineering & Construction,+ and Argonne National Laboratory.

Belgian Doel-3 and Tihange-2 Back in the News

Tihange Nuclear Plant, Belgium.  Courtesy Electrabel.

Tihange Nuclear Plant, Belgium. Courtesy Electrabel.

The years-long saga surrounding the reactor pressure vessels at the Doel-3 nuclear power plant and Tihange-2 NPP in Belgium has taken another turn, pushing these units back into the broader news cycle and renewing calls from some (uninformed) quarters for further worldwide action and/or permanent shutdowns.

Responding to System Demand II: Extreme Scenarios

Gravelines Units 1 through 6, France.  Image courtesy AREVA USA.

Gravelines Units 1 through 6, France. Image courtesy AREVA USA.

The continued introduction of renewables onto the electric grid in the United States is ensuring that discussion of whether or not these assets can be integrated with existing or expected designs of other sources continues. In this discussion, nuclear energy is often wrongly described as "on or off"-but in fact, nuclear plants can and do load follow (respond to changing system demands) although it's a matter of both design and owner utilization-with a focus on economics-that determines if or when any actually do.

"Nuclear Medicine" - National Nuclear Science Week, Day 5 (October 24)

NSWlogoThe fifth and final day of Nuclear Science Week is all about Nuclear Medicine. Have you ever experienced a procedure at a hospital that employed radiation? Did you know that there are actually many different ways that nuclear technology is employed in medicine-and not just at your local hospitals?

Business focused approach to molten salt reactors

I've been listening to an evangelical group of molten salt reactor enthusiasts for several years. Their pitch is attractive and they often make good arguments about the value of rethinking the light water reactor technology model, but most of the participants are unrealistic about the economic, material, technical, and regulatory barriers that their concepts must overcome before they can serve market needs.

Nuclear Video Matinee Mother's Day Double Feature

The second Sunday in May marks the celebration of Mother's Day in the United States and many countries. In honor of this wonderful tradition, the Nuclear Cafe Matinee is quite pleased to showcase interviews with nuclear engineer Julie Ezold, Californium-252 Production Program Manager at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Food Irradiation Can Save Thousands of Lives Each Year

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 1 in 6 people get food poisoning each year in the United States and that 3000 die from foodborne illness. Food irradiation can drastically decrease these numbers by killing harmful bacteria such as E. coli and Salmonella in meat and produce. The U.S. government endorses the use of food irradiation, but does not educate the public about its benefits. Food irradiation has not caught on in the United States because consumers fear that radiation will mutate the food. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires a label (pictured below) for any food that has been irradiated.

An Ethos of Nuclear Reactor Safety

The commercial nuclear power industry has a remarkable safety record despite lingering images from the accidents at Three Mile Island and Fukushima Daiichi. This record is the legacy of a community of nuclear power plant designers, operators, and regulators who, though imperfect, were committed to the safety of the commercial nuclear power enterprise.