Thorium reactors are the latest big thing in nuclear spin. Noel Wauchope says: don't believe the hype. Thorium reactors are the latest flavour in nuclear power hype. According to their enthusiastic proponents, these reactors will be "smaller, safer, cheaper, cleaner Thorium-based fuel cycles have been studied for about 30 years, but on a much smaller scale than uranium or uranium/plutonium cycles. Germany, India, Japan, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States have conducted research and development, including irradiating thorium fuel in test reactors to high burn-ups.

Radioactive Waste Management/Spent Nuclear Fuel

2019/9/26If using a thorium fuel to produce fissile U-233, the SNF will have U-233, with a half-life of 159,200 years. This will have an impact on the long-term radioactive decay of the spent fuel. If compared with MOX fuel, the activity around one million years in the cycles with thorium will be higher due to the presence of the not fully decayed U-233.

2019/10/31Some proposed thorium fuel cycles even require 20% enriched uranium in order to get the chain reaction started in existing reactors using thorium fuel. It takes 90% enrichment to make weapons-usable uranium, but very little additional work is needed to

Thorium fuel, which is safer, easier to clean up, and not disposed to be used as nuclear weapons, could appease the opposition to nuclear power. Thorium can't be weaponized because it doesn't produce enough recoverable plutonium, which is required for building nuclear weapons.

2017/7/25Well this technology uses the thorium fuel cycle with molten salt (made from lithium fluoride beryllium fluoride) to generate power. The technology is quite useful efficient as these type of reactors can use the fuel which is thorium, at an efficiency factor of 200 when compared to conventional reactors with the source fuel as uranium.

2020/2/18Researchers at Stanford University have found that thorium gives off 100 times less radioactive waste than uranium, the most commonly used fuel. When it comes to power, thorium excels. The European Council for Nuclear Research estimates that 1 tonne of thorium generates as much energy as 200 tonnes of uranium, which is also equivalent to 3,500,000 tonnes of coal.

Thorium Fuel Cycle

Thorium reactors are based on the thorium fuel cycle and use thorium 232 as a fertile material. During the fuel burning, thorium 232 transforms into a fissile uranium 233 . Unlike natural uranium, natural thorium contains only trace amounts of fissile material (such as thorium 231), which are insufficient to initiate and sustain nuclear chain reaction.

Once reactor fuel (uranium or thorium) is used in a reactor, it can be treated and put into another reactor as fuel. In fact, typical reactors only extract a few percent of the energy in their fuel. You could power the entire US electricity grid off of the energy in nuclear waste for almost 100 years ( details ).

However, the HLW properties arrived at a distinctly opposite result in transition (strongly favoring uranium, whereas thorium was strongly favored at steady-state), because used present-day fuel is disposed without being recycled given that uranium-233, rather

2010/10/31Thorium would be first purified then converted into a fluoride. The same initial fuel loading of one ton/year is discharged primarily as fission products to be disposed of for the fission thorium cycle. Ease of separation of the lower volume and short lived fission

Some proposed thorium fuel cycles even require 20% enriched uranium in order to get the chain reaction started in existing reactors using thorium fuel. It takes 90% enrichment to make weapons-usable uranium, but very little additional work is needed to

The alternative fuel that we can opt according to top scientist are - Solar energy, wind energy and Thorium. According to Australian science writer Tim Dean, thorium promises what uranium never delivered: abundant, safe and clean energy - and a way to burn up old radioactive waste.

Some proposed thorium fuel cycles even require 20% enriched uranium in order to get the chain reaction started in existing reactors using thorium fuel. It takes 90% enrichment to make weapons-usable uranium, but very little additional work is needed to

Thorium fuel, which is safer, easier to clean up, and not disposed to be used as nuclear weapons, could appease the opposition to nuclear power. Thorium can't be weaponized because it doesn't produce enough recoverable plutonium, which is required for building nuclear weapons.

Strategic Research Agenda

that, if Th-MOX is directly disposed, thorium daughter nuclides build in through decay over time, eventually making the thorium fuel more radiotoxic than its uranium counterpart. Figure 1: Th-MOX pellet irradiated in Obrigheim within the FP5 THORIUM CYCLE and

2019/11/3Vast quantities of highly acidic, highly radioactive liquid waste then remain to be disposed of. (Only 6 kilograms of plutonium-239 can fuel a nuclear weapon, while each reactor makes 250 kilos of plutonium per year. One-millionth of a gram of plutonium, if inhaled, is

2015/7/20Among them, the one using molten salt and thorium based fuel (MSFR) has gained many supporters in the public, if not necessarily within the community of experts. I believe that some of the enthusiasm for thorium and MSFR is misplaced in view of the present scientific and technical situation – keeping in mind that I am concerned with energy production for the 21st century, not for the

The idea of using thorium as a fuel source is not new; prototype reactors using thorium were operated in the United States in the 1960s. "The reason why thorium was never seriously pursued as an alternative to uranium is believed to be because the uranium fuel cycle generates much more plutonium, which is the raw material used for nuclear weapons," said Parks.

However, the HLW properties arrived at a distinctly opposite result in transition (strongly favoring uranium, whereas thorium was strongly favored at steady-state), because used present-day fuel is disposed without being recycled given that uranium-233, rather

A thorium fuel offers valuable attractive advantages: low fuel cost, high reduction of actinides production and the possibility to enable the reactor to act as a breeder of fuel by the neutron capture of fertile 232Th. We evaluated the possibility to mix thorium with 239

2014/5/16Thorium is the nuclear fuel of the future. Keep a close eye on this one. The Best Free Investment You'll Ever Make Our analysts have traveled the world over, dedicated to finding the best and most profitable investments in the global energy markets. All you have

The quantity of thorium currently being disposed of as waste can fuel many ADTR reactors without the need to open new mines. Thorium-fuelled reactors produce negligible quantities of transuranic actinide wastes and can be configured as a system for destroying actinide wastes or spent plutonium created in other reactors, further reducing the long-term waste burden.

Thorium can be used as fuel in molten salt fast breeder reactor, which is a benefit for long-term sustainability, but thorium has little relation to the cost of constructing a new reactor today. As of this past month, China now has a $350m institute with 140 PhDs plugging away on molten salt reactors.