Build More Nuclear Reactors Now

I’m utterly fed up with the unending negativity and cynical sensationalism regarding the situation in Japan. I reckon 95% of what is coming out of the region and called news by the mainstream media is speculation and supposition. The negativity is driven by the medias acknowledged more than friendly relationship with the so called environmental movement brain damaged cave dwelling anti-human sector.

I was pleased to find something today that provided some relief to this tedious garbage. The Register has an excellent article highlighting the positives of the situation and pointing out that in one of the most powerful earthquakes in modern times, the reactors built a long time ago and nowhere near as safe as modern reactors, have pretty much stood up to the stress. The reactor cores are all under control and radiation releases, in spite of the over the top scare mongering of a dying industry desperate to regain an audience, have not been anywhere near as bad as they could have been. The main issue seems to be the storage of spent fuel rods.

Japan’s nuclear power plants have performed magnificently in the face of a disaster hugely greater than they were designed to withstand, remaining entirely safe throughout and sustaining only minor damage. The unfolding Fukushima story has enormously strengthened the case for advanced nations – including Japan – to build more nuclear power plants, in the knowledge that no imaginable disaster can result in serious problems.

Let’s recap on what’s happened so far. The earthquake which hit on Friday was terrifically powerful, shaking the entire planet on its axis and jolting the whole of Japan several feet sideways. At 8.9 on the Richter scale, it was some five times stronger than the older Fukushima plants had been designed to cope with.

If nuclear power plants were merely as safe as they are advertised to be, there should have been a major failure right then. As the hot cores ceased to be cooled by the water which is used to extract power from them, control rods would have remained withdrawn and a runaway chain reaction could have ensued – probably resulting in the worst thing that can happen to a properly designed nuclear reactor: a core meltdown in which the super hot fuel rods actually melt and slag down the whole core into a blob of molten metal. In this case the only thing to do is seal up the containment and wait: no radiation disaster will take place, but the reactor is a total write off and cooling the core off will be difficult and take a long time. Eventual cleanup will be protracted and expensive.

Please go to the site and read the rest of the article. Its well worth it.

8 thoughts on “Build More Nuclear Reactors Now

  1. Stop flogging your “over-designed” horse, Sinner. Of all the things which should be over-designed, and probably to a minimum of at least 5 times over, would be nuclear reactors!

    As a Mechanical Engineer I can assure you that most things are over-designed – usually by a factor of at least two times – depending on the consequences were they to fail. And to over-design something 2 times may only involve 10% more material and often little or no extra labour costs/time. As an added benefit often maintenance costs are reduced through much lower fatigue rates, etc and therefore less frequent maintenance checks, which also save on labour costs.

    So basically to NOT over-design is FALSE economy.

    One almost gets the impression that you wish the reactors had failed catastrophically, rather than you discovering they were 5, or more (I’ve heard 7), times over-designed. A very strange perspective, if you ask me.

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  2. “Demonstrates the level of dishonesty and ignorance of journalists ‘reporting’ on this story.”

    That’s the real story- the utter incompetence of the mainstream media. Proving once again that they are not trained in journalism, only advocacy, and therefore completely unable to apply the standards of objectivity that should be applied in the trade.

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  3. @Kris K, I pointed that all out to him in a previous thread, he’s incapable of rational thought so you might as well not feed the murderous troll…

    I pointed out after this happened that if there isn’t a Chernobyl type incident given the circumstances that it is a massive triumph for Nuclear Power, seems to be heading that way…

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  4. In fact this was my post:

    Sinner I studied Engineering at Uni before changing to Science…

    Everything is overengineered, the building you work and study in is over engineered up to 10X, about the only exception is Aircraft which are engineered to about 1.5X due to weight issues, this is compensated for by multiple redundancies…

    Over-engineering is almost always a good thing, it allows parts and structures to usually last much longer than their design specifications and it helps to massively reduce insurance costs… In many cases if government regulation didn’t exist insurance companies would insist on close to similar strengths (which is of course how it should happen), if we didn’t over engineer things they would fail right on schedule or whenever estimated required strengths were exceeded, i.e. regularly…

    The point I’m making is as an engineer you are trained to over-engineer, it’s not a government dictum just common sense…

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  5. Yeah, thanks Jeremy, I saw your post the other day. But it certainly never hurts to repeat the point. (I do it often when preaching 😉 ) One hopes common sense prevails … eventually.

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  6. And the interesting thing is of course that the whole spent fuel rod issue is largely a result of the whole leftist and green movement stopping any form of common sense debate about these matters, combined with the ever encroaching government involvement and regulation. Much more openness and a solid commercial/free market approach would have seen much safer en more efficient nuclear reactors a long time ago.

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