World monazite resources are estimated to be about 12 million tons, two-thirds of which are in heavy mineral sands deposits on the south and east coasts of India. , At the 2011 annual conference of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, it was announced that "China has initiated a research and development project in thorium MSR technology. " Nuclear physicist Victor J. Stenger, for one, first learned of it in 2012: It came as a surprise to me to learn recently that such an alternative has been available to us since World War II, but not pursued because it lacked weapons applications. Thorium High-temperature Reactor Reactor, Pebble, Thorium. The […] According to proponents, a thorium fuel cycle offers several potential advantages over a uranium fuel cycle—including much greater abundance of thorium found on Earth, superior physical and nuclear fuel properties, and reduced nuclear waste production. Student: SK Gintner. 80 incidents were logged in its short lifetime. That research led to the Peach Bottom, PA 40-MW reactor that pro- duced electricity from 1966 to 1974.  India's first commercial fast breeder reactor—the 500 MWe Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR)—is approaching completion at the Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research, Kalpakkam, Tamil Nadu. THTR-300 was only in full service for 423 days. Learn how and when to remove this template message, European Organization for Nuclear Research, https://www.nextbigfuture.com/2019/09/p3tek-recommends-thorcon-molten-salt-nuclear-reactor-for-indonesia.html, India's three-stage nuclear power programme, "Uses For Uranium-233: What Should Be Kept for Future Needs? One of these reactors is the High Temperature Reactor (HTR), which consists of a randomly packed bed of fuel pebbles that are cooled by helium. India is the "only country in the world with a detailed, funded, government-approved plan" to focus on thorium-based nuclear power. According to Dr. Shamanin, the blanket was based on a concept of a multi-purpose high-temperature gas-cooled low-power reactor fueled by thorium. "In the past, the government was interested in nuclear power because of the energy shortage.  That vision of using thorium in place of uranium was set out in the 1950s by physicist Homi Bhabha. Uranium reactors had already been established, and Hyman Rickover, de facto head of the US nuclear program, wanted the plutonium from uranium-powered nuclear plants to make bombs. BHAVINI builds breeder reactors in India.  The proposed 10 MW demonstration reactor in Chile could be used to power a 20 million litre/day desalination plant. The study reported that building a ThorCon TMSR-500 would meet Indonesia's regulations for nuclear energy safety and performance. In their opinion, the decision to stop development of thorium reactors, at least as a backup option, “was an excusable mistake.”. It started operating in 1983, synchronized with the grid in 1985, operated at full power in February 1987 and was shut down September 1, 1989. Pressurized Water Reactor EAR. " China also finalized an agreement with a Canadian nuclear technology company to develop improved CANDU reactors using thorium and uranium as a fuel. , Currently two reactors are under construction in the Gobi desert, with completion expected in 2020. The LMFBR had a larger breeding rate ... and won the competition." The seventh is still conceptual, although currently in development by many countries:. :13 Moir and Teller estimated in 2004 that the cost for their recommended prototype would be "well under $1 billion with operation costs likely on the order of $100 million per year," and as a result a "large-scale nuclear power plan" usable by many countries could be set up within a decade. A, Mining thorium is safer and more efficient than mining uranium. The reasons were that uranium-fueled reactors were more efficient, the research was proven, and thorium's breeding ratio was thought insufficient to produce enough fuel to support development of a commercial nuclear industry. A small modular nuclear reactor to replace coal plants could be on the market within 5 years. India's thorium-based nuclear plans", "India plans 'safer' nuclear plant powered by thorium", "India's Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor at advanced stage of completion", http://pib.nic.in/newsite/erelease.aspx?relid=98897, "PFBR: Parliamentary panel slams govt for 'inordinate delays, "Government approves new sites for setting up nuclear power projects", "Self-sustaining nuclear energy from Israel", "Safe nuclear: Japanese utility elaborates on thorium plans", "Norway ringing in thorium nuclear New Year with Westinghouse at the party", "Development of Tiny Thorium Reactors Could Wean the World Off Oil In Just Five Years | Popular Science", "U.S. partners with China on new nuclear", Congressman Sestak's Amendments in National Defense Authorization Act Pass House, "UTPB, private company to push for advanced reactor", "Advanced reactor plan gets off the ground in Texas", https://www.oecd-nea.org/ndd/pubs/2008/6345-uranium-2007.pdf, International Atomic Energy Agency presentation by Jim Kennedy, Mass and Composition of the Continental Crust, "Nuclear power from thorium: different options", "Conceptual design of Indian molten salt breeder reactor", Thorium fuel cycle – Potential benefits and challenges, International Thorium Energy Organisation – IThEO.org, International Thorium Energy Committee – iThEC, "Energy From Thorium: A Nuclear Waste Burning Liquid Salt Thorium Reactor", “Uranium Is So Last Century – Enter Thorium, the New Green Nuke”, "Skeptoid #555: Thorium Reactors: Fact and Fiction", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Thorium-based_nuclear_power&oldid=996586118, Wikipedia introduction cleanup from August 2020, Articles covered by WikiProject Wikify from August 2020, All articles covered by WikiProject Wikify, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Thorium is a metal with radioactive properties that has the symbol Th and the atomic number 90 in the periodic table, and can be used as nuclear fuel in power plants to generate clean electricity. The THTR-300 was a thorium high-temperature nuclear reactor rated at 300 MW electric (THTR-300) in Hamm-Uentrop, Germany. The Steenkampskraal Thorium Limited (STL) high temperature modular reactor (HTMR) is a Generation IV 100 MW helium-cooled power plant that features a thorium-based fuel cycle. It started operating in 1983, synchronized with the grid in 1985, operated at full power in February 1987 and was shut down September 1, 1989. Reactor, Pebble, Thorium. Estimated Additional Reserves REMOTE. This page was last edited on 27 December 2020, at 14:11. It is therefore an important and potentially viable technology that seems able to contribute to building credible, long-term nuclear energy scenarios. According to the World Nuclear Association, there are seven types of reactors that can be designed to use thorium as a nuclear fuel. The thorium fuel cycle is a potential way to produce long term nuclear energy with low radio-toxicity waste. Some experts note possible specific disadvantages of thorium nuclear power: Research and development of thorium-based nuclear reactors, primarily the Liquid fluoride thorium reactor (LFTR), MSR design, has been or is now being done in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Brazil, India, China, France, the Czech Republic, Japan, Russia, Canada, Israel, Denmark and the Netherlands. Thorium is mostly found with the rare earth phosphate mineral, monazite, which contains up to about 12% thorium phosphate, but 6–7% on average. The 300 MWe Thorium High Temperature Reactor (THTR)at Hamm-Uentrop in Germany operated with thorium-HEU fuel between 1983 and 1989, when it was shut down due to technical problems. However, if thorium-based power plants were adopted on a large-scale, virtually all the world's thorium requirements could be supplied simply by refining monazites for their more valuable REEs. Because this system used a Rankine cycle, water could occasionally ingress into the helium circuit. ", "The Energy From Thorium Foundation Thorium", "Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactors: An old idea in nuclear power gets reexamined", "Edward Teller, Global Warming, and Molten Salt Reactors", "Is Thorium the Biggest Energy Breakthrough Since Fire?  Validation of its core reactor physics was underway by late 2017. They estimated the reactor could function without an operator for 120 days. " That same month it was reported that the US Department of Energy is "quietly collaborating with China" on thorium-based nuclear power designs using an MSR. 153–63. , Others, including former NASA scientist and thorium expert Kirk Sorensen, agree that "thorium was the alternative path that was not taken … ":2 According to Sorensen, during a documentary interview, he states that if the US had not discontinued its research in 1974 it could have "probably achieved energy independence by around 2000.  Conferences with experts from as many as 32 countries are held, including one by the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in 2013, which focuses on thorium as an alternative nuclear technology without requiring production of nuclear waste. Possibly", "Uranium Is So Last Century – Enter Thorium, the New Green Nuke", "Obama could kill fossil fuels overnight with a nuclear dash for thorium", "Alvin Radkowsky, 86, Developer Of a Safer Nuclear Reactor Fuel", Controlling threats to nuclear security a holistic model, "Safe nuclear does exist, and China is leading the way with thorium", http://www-pub.iaea.org/MTCD/publications/PDF/TE_1450_web.pdf, "High Efficiency Nuclear Power Plants Using Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor Technology", "Thorium fuel cycle – Potential benefits and challenges", Certain issues of economic prospects of thorium-based nuclear energy systems, "The thorium molten salt reactor: Moving on from the MSBR", "Thorium: Not a near-term commercial nuclear fuel", "Thorium power has a protactinium problem", "CERN to host conference on thorium technologies for energy", "Lightbridge Corp : Hans Blix Urges Support for Thorium Power Development", "Thorium Power Canada is in advanced talks with Chile and Indonesia for 10 MW and 25 MW solid thorium fueled reactors", "Moltex to partner in nuclear research and innovation cluster", "Second company investing in nuclear technology in N.B. , Alvin Radkowsky, chief designer of the world's second full-scale atomic electric power plant in Shippingport, Pennsylvania, founded a joint US and Russian project in 1997 to create a thorium-based reactor, considered a "creative breakthrough. , In February 2014, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), in Mumbai, India, presented their latest design for a "next-generation nuclear reactor" that burns thorium as its fuel ore, calling it the Advanced Heavy Water Reactor (AHWR). 1974 the Joint Undertaking `` Hochtemperatur-Kernkraftwerk GmbH THTR-300 was only in full service 423! 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