Saturday, April 12, 2008

UConn prof writes clear PBMR overview

Pelindaba, South Africa, pebble bed work site

Professor Lee Langston writes in Mechanical Engineering
University of Connecticut retired professor Lee Langston has just published a very clear, readable history of the pebble bed modular reactor project underway in South Africa. Pebbles Making Waves is the feature article in the April, 2008, issue of Mechanical Engineering, published by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

I encourage you to read this overview of the history and status of the Pebble Bed Modular Reactor project in South Africa.


Charles Barton said...

Robert, I have a question about throttle capacity of PBMRs. How easy is load following with PBMRs? Would it possible to use them to generate peak electricity, and then switch them off when peak load diminishes?

whareagle said...

C'mon Robert, update us! Is there any effort to push this effort out to either of the Candidates?

Also - where can I get information on just how much cleaner France's air might be than the US', IF the claim is true?

Robert Hargraves said...

Belated answers.

Re: load-following.
Andy Kadak told us that the best strategy is not to attempt to run at reduced power, but to switch off some of the 100 MW+ modules that would be ganged together in a 1 GW sized plant.

Re: Candidates on PBR
The candidates are discussing only the short term nuclear possibilities. Only the Gen III+ capabilities of Areva, Westinghouse/Toshiba or GE can make any impact on US power in the next decade.

whareagle said...

Okay, nuclear power came up again in debate 2 with the candidates last night. I'm all for it, and I THINK both candidates made overtures that they were on board. How do we get them to consider PBR technology instead of the older, perhaps riskier stuff?

whareagle said...

Looks like Glen Rose will get a permit to double its' capacity. Not my ultimate mode of atomic greenery, but better than gas or coal, so I'm thumbs up for it. Now, any way we can approach management and ask them to consider PBR?