Saskatchewan Nuclear and Nuclear Accesories

petros

The Central Scrutinizer
Nov 21, 2008
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Scientists developed portable nuclear reactor with amazing feature: ‘Transformative for our economy, industry, and communities’​

Rick Kazmer
Sun, December 24, 2023 at 5:00 PM CST·3 min read

A small nuclear reactor that can run for eight years or more without water is scheduled to go online by 2029 in Saskatchewan, Canada.
In November, Saskatchewan’s government announced an $80 million CAD (about $59 million USD) project from the Saskatchewan Research Council to demonstrate the microreactor’s capability. The unit, called an eVinci, is being built by Westinghouse.
“This project has the opportunity to be transformative for our economy, industry, and communities,” Premier Scott Moe said in a government press release. “Microreactors provide a custom solution for Saskatchewan’s unique energy needs.”
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It’s also cleaner energy, as each eVinci will “reduce up to 55,000 tons” of air pollution each year, according to Westinghouse.
The unit will be capable of “producing five megawatts of electricity, over 13 megawatts of high-temperature heat, or operating in combined heat and power mode,” per the council.
For reference, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission reported in 2012 that a single megawatt of capacity for a conventional power plant produces energy similar to what is used by 400 to 900 homes in a year.
Westinghouse considers their unit “revolutionary” technology for future energy needs, per a video clip. Microreactors are notable for their portability and potential to power remote locations. The U.S. Energy Department reports that several kinds are in development in the United States.

The eVinci will be installed above ground with a small footprint. The unit’s supporting infrastructure will fit inside a hockey rink. The power can be integrated into existing grids, and it can be paired with renewable power sources, as well.
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With its “heat pipe technology,” the system doesn’t need water to cool down. After an approximate eight-year service life, the unit can be hauled away for disposal, and another one can be plugged in, all per Westinghouse.
“A simple design, functioning like a battery,” the clip’s narrator says.
There are 54 commercial nuclear power plants in the U.S. (per the Energy Information Administration) and six nuclear power stations in Canada (per the Canadian government).
In the U.S., the plants create about 2,205 tons of nuclear waste a year, less than half the volume of an Olympic swimming pool. The fuel comes in the form of ceramic pellets (no oozy drums), and researchers are discovering better ways to deal with the waste, including nuke-loving bacteria.
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Westinghouse experts report that the eVinci’s used fuel will be returned to the company or placed deep underground for long-term storage. The design eliminates risk from high pressure and coolant loss. What’s more, the heat the unit makes could be used for industrial work, all per the company.
The council sees this first eVinci as a proof-of-concept unit, preparing the way for more in the future.
“What we learn through this project will prepare [the council] to assist communities and industries in future projects,” council CEO Mike Crabtree said in the press release.
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petros

The Central Scrutinizer
Nov 21, 2008
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Low Earth Orbit

Uranium price hits new post-Fukushima high​

Colin McClelland | January 3, 2024 | 1:18 pm Energy Markets Canada China Russia and Central Asia USA Uranium
Nuclear Plant Uranium Price Stock Photo

Uranium’s spot price continues to rise as more countries back nuclear power. Credit: Adobe Stock

The spot price of uranium continues to rise, boosted by pledges to triple nuclear power by mid-century, supply hiccups from producers such as Cameco (TSX: CCO; NYSE: CCJ) and the looming threat of a ban on Russian exports to the West.

Uranium hit $91 per lb. this week, another record since triple-digit prices in 2007 and the fallout after the 2011 Fukushima disaster in Japan that saw several countries curb nuclear energy plans. The price has increased from about $50 per lb. at mid-year.

passed the House of Representatives and awaits debate in the Senate, though most utilities in the West have been shunning its supplies since the war in Ukraine began nearly two years ago. A ban could spark retaliatory measures and Russia has plants to process uranium into fuel, whereas the US is restarting one. However, the Biden administration is set to sign a $2 billion boost to the country’s nuclear industry into law within weeks.

Restarts planned​

Numerous mothballed mines in Australia, the U.S. and Africa are planned for restarts this year including Paladin Energy’s (ASX: PDN) Langer Heinrich in Namibia and Boss Energy’s (ASX: BOE) Honeymoon operation in South Australia. EnCore Energy (TSXV: EU) is starting output from its Rosita and Alta Mesa plants in Texas, while Energy Fuels (TSX: EFR; NYSE: UUUU) has resumed output from its Pinyon Plain, La Sal and Pandora mines in the southwest US. In Canada, Cameco is ramping up production from McArthur River in Saskatchewan.

The industry needs new mines, but a lost decade of investment after the Fukushima disaster means the supply gap will grow in the short-term, according to the Sprott Physical Uranium Trust, which holds 63 million lb. of yellowcake uranium valued at $5.78 billion.

The trust purchased 3.8 million lb. last year, the lowest since the fund was established in 2021. It plans this year to purchase no more than 9 million lb. on the spot market. It’s a prudent measure from a regulatory perspective to prevent funds competing with consumers for material in a deficit market, BMO’s Hamilton said.

“While there is lots of chatter about the impact of financial players in the market, the price gains this year have clearly been driven by utilities which purchased the most uranium in 2023 since 2012,” Sprott’s Ciampaglia said.

“The industry will require significant capital investments to meet its ambitious expansion plans,” he said. “Thankfully, investor interest in the sector is growing globally as the opportunity becomes better understood and the legacy stigma fades. As the sector grows and recapitalizes, it will attract ever larger institutions, drawn by a compelling investment thesis and improving liquidity.”
 
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bob the dog

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How tricky is it going to be to come up with a nuclear powered vehicle that will solve basic transportation needs? Not to say there would not be issues with that.