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  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,430
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    Unlike the chemical processes to which you refer -- which can be thrown out of equilibrium -- radioactive decay processes are totally unaffected by the environment in which they take place, nor by the amount of radioactivity (if any) around them. They are entirely controlled by instability within the nucleus of the isotope in question.

    To suggest that somehow increasing the amount of radioactivity released will "overwhelm" the radioactive decay process is to confuse radioactive decay with chemical natural processes such as weathering or oxidation, which is, I'm sorry to have to say it, just flat wrong.

    If radioactive materials are loosed into the environment by activities of man, this is, without question, not a particularly intelligent thing to do. However, nuclear power -- barring accidents caused by bad (not evil -- see above) engineering -- does not release any of the longer lived isotopes into the environment. The half lives of the fuel isotopes themselves are rather long -- on the order of around a billion years or so. Some of the fission products have significantly shorter half lives, and these are the wastes of concern, and rightly so. They fall in two main groups -- one group with half lives on the order of hundreds of years, and another group with half lives on the order of hundreds of thousands of years. Oddly, nothing much in between.

    Background radiation levels have risen since World War II, but the increase is not due to nuclear power generation but to weapons testing -- with two notable exceptions: the Chernobyl accident and the Fukushima accident, both of which did cause an increase in background radiation. Both of these, it should be carefully noted, were the result of bad engineering and human error. In the case of Chernobyl, the use of an obsolete reactor design combined with a lack of understanding of processes on the part of the operators. The Fukushima accident was, not to put too fine a point on it, the simple result of inexplicable engineering decisions: placing the backup power plant in probably the most vulnerable location it could have been placed in.

    Some of the fission products or their daughters are variably soluble in water. For this reason, it is necessary to either confine them chemically in such a way -- such as within stable crystals -- that they are not soluble, or to protect them from water. I'm not particularly fond of the latter approach -- not because of institutional problems such as you refer to above, but because of geologic time lines and processes which make the efforts -- and time lines of mankind -- quite irrelevant. The former approach, as my colleague mentioned above had found and perfected, is quite feasible. Without going into vast and terrible detail, suffice it to say that the crystal structure of zeolites is such that the capture of the fission product atoms and their daughters is absolute at any temperature less than that sufficient to melting point of granite -- around 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

    I am a little reluctant to write the following, but I think I must. I mentioned in an earlier post that to failing to use technology in a manner which benefits mankind is evil. Failure to use nuclear power to supply the energy which our planet, and the many people on it, needs will cause harm -- not just to mankind, but to the planet, and is just plain flat out evil.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    delcrossvwmgeorge
  • Jells
    Jells Member Posts: 566
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    I mentioned in an earlier post that to failing to use technology in a manner which benefits mankind is evil. Failure to use nuclear power to supply the energy which our planet, and the many people on it, needs will cause harm -- not just to mankind, but to the planet, and is just plain flat out evil.

    I bet everyone here believes in technology. It's belief in people where I personally fall short. As you pointed out both the Chernobyl and Fukushima events were brought on by errors of human judgement at best, though human venality is a close contender. Engineering utterly foolproof systems and insuring they get installed that way is a pretty high bar IMO. The fools are just so damn clever, and the bean counters who don't understand the technology they're regulating can be just as dangerous.

    How do you insure against human nature? Just about any manmade catastrophe you can think of that people afterwards say: "No one saw it coming", from the Johnstown Dam disaster to the 2008 economic meltdown, there were people who DID see it coming and were shushed by the people with economic interest in ignoring the warnings.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,430
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    good point... you can never overestimate the ingenuity of a fool.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    DaveinscrantonCanucker
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,776
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    They break down into other "stuff" that is stable and then just stop.

    good point... you can never overestimate the ingenuity of a fool.

    How many nuclear accidents have there been in the military?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    delcrossv
  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,218
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    Unlike the chemical processes to which you refer -- which can be thrown out of equilibrium -- radioactive decay processes are totally unaffected by the environment in which they take place, nor by the amount of radioactivity (if any) around them. They are entirely controlled by instability within the nucleus of the isotope in question.

    To suggest that somehow increasing the amount of radioactivity released will "overwhelm" the radioactive decay process is to confuse radioactive decay with chemical natural processes such as weathering or oxidation, which is, I'm sorry to have to say it, just flat wrong.

    If radioactive materials are loosed into the environment by activities of man, this is, without question, not a particularly intelligent thing to do. However, nuclear power -- barring accidents caused by bad (not evil -- see above) engineering -- does not release any of the longer lived isotopes into the environment. The half lives of the fuel isotopes themselves are rather long -- on the order of around a billion years or so. Some of the fission products have significantly shorter half lives, and these are the wastes of concern, and rightly so. They fall in two main groups -- one group with half lives on the order of hundreds of years, and another group with half lives on the order of hundreds of thousands of years. Oddly, nothing much in between.

    Background radiation levels have risen since World War II, but the increase is not due to nuclear power generation but to weapons testing -- with two notable exceptions: the Chernobyl accident and the Fukushima accident, both of which did cause an increase in background radiation. Both of these, it should be carefully noted, were the result of bad engineering and human error. In the case of Chernobyl, the use of an obsolete reactor design combined with a lack of understanding of processes on the part of the operators. The Fukushima accident was, not to put too fine a point on it, the simple result of inexplicable engineering decisions: placing the backup power plant in probably the most vulnerable location it could have been placed in.

    Some of the fission products or their daughters are variably soluble in water. For this reason, it is necessary to either confine them chemically in such a way -- such as within stable crystals -- that they are not soluble, or to protect them from water. I'm not particularly fond of the latter approach -- not because of institutional problems such as you refer to above, but because of geologic time lines and processes which make the efforts -- and time lines of mankind -- quite irrelevant. The former approach, as my colleague mentioned above had found and perfected, is quite feasible. Without going into vast and terrible detail, suffice it to say that the crystal structure of zeolites is such that the capture of the fission product atoms and their daughters is absolute at any temperature less than that sufficient to melting point of granite -- around 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

    I am a little reluctant to write the following, but I think I must. I mentioned in an earlier post that to failing to use technology in a manner which benefits mankind is evil. Failure to use nuclear power to supply the energy which our planet, and the many people on it, needs will cause harm -- not just to mankind, but to the planet, and is just plain flat out evil.

    I am in no way saying that the two processes are the same ( one being simple chemical reactions, the other involving sub atomic particles) , what I am saying is that overtime the levels of radioactivity in the environment are steadily increasing, just like the the problems of air pollution. With 1/2 lives in the thousands of years, it appears exceedingly likely that radioactivity levels are going to continue to rise and begin impacting the health of the planet. If the amount of radioactivity released into the environment exceeds the reduction due to decay, we will all once again be in the same type of situation we appear to be in today, only it will be radiation poisoning rather than air pollution and related pollutants.
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,430
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    US, or US and worldwide, @ChrisJ . The Soviets haven't done so well. They've had at least one meltdown that I'm aware of, and maybe more. Their reactors -- particularly in the Alpha class -- are very highly stressed. I don't believe that there have been any on operational US Navy vessels.

    For @The Steam Whisperer : if you suppose that using nuclear technology for power will increase atmospheric radiation levels, you might be right. Problem with the argument is that it is false.

    Of course there is another implicit argument there -- that our present way of going will last more than another century or so. Bluntly, the way we are going, it won't. Other civilizations who are not afraid of technology will prevail, and that will be that.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    delcrossv
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
    edited February 2022
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    Unlike the chemical processes to which you refer -- which can be thrown out of equilibrium -- radioactive decay processes are totally unaffected by the environment in which they take place, nor by the amount of radioactivity (if any) around them. They are entirely controlled by instability within the nucleus of the isotope in question.

    To suggest that somehow increasing the amount of radioactivity released will "overwhelm" the radioactive decay process is to confuse radioactive decay with chemical natural processes such as weathering or oxidation, which is, I'm sorry to have to say it, just flat wrong.

    If radioactive materials are loosed into the environment by activities of man, this is, without question, not a particularly intelligent thing to do. However, nuclear power -- barring accidents caused by bad (not evil -- see above) engineering -- does not release any of the longer lived isotopes into the environment. The half lives of the fuel isotopes themselves are rather long -- on the order of around a billion years or so. Some of the fission products have significantly shorter half lives, and these are the wastes of concern, and rightly so. They fall in two main groups -- one group with half lives on the order of hundreds of years, and another group with half lives on the order of hundreds of thousands of years. Oddly, nothing much in between.

    Background radiation levels have risen since World War II, but the increase is not due to nuclear power generation but to weapons testing -- with two notable exceptions: the Chernobyl accident and the Fukushima accident, both of which did cause an increase in background radiation. Both of these, it should be carefully noted, were the result of bad engineering and human error. In the case of Chernobyl, the use of an obsolete reactor design combined with a lack of understanding of processes on the part of the operators. The Fukushima accident was, not to put too fine a point on it, the simple result of inexplicable engineering decisions: placing the backup power plant in probably the most vulnerable location it could have been placed in.

    Some of the fission products or their daughters are variably soluble in water. For this reason, it is necessary to either confine them chemically in such a way -- such as within stable crystals -- that they are not soluble, or to protect them from water. I'm not particularly fond of the latter approach -- not because of institutional problems such as you refer to above, but because of geologic time lines and processes which make the efforts -- and time lines of mankind -- quite irrelevant. The former approach, as my colleague mentioned above had found and perfected, is quite feasible. Without going into vast and terrible detail, suffice it to say that the crystal structure of zeolites is such that the capture of the fission product atoms and their daughters is absolute at any temperature less than that sufficient to melting point of granite -- around 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

    I am a little reluctant to write the following, but I think I must. I mentioned in an earlier post that to failing to use technology in a manner which benefits mankind is evil. Failure to use nuclear power to supply the energy which our planet, and the many people on it, needs will cause harm -- not just to mankind, but to the planet, and is just plain flat out evil.

    I am in no way saying that the two processes are the same ( one being simple chemical reactions, the other involving sub atomic particles) , what I am saying is that overtime the levels of radioactivity in the environment are steadily increasing, just like the the problems of air pollution. With 1/2 lives in the thousands of years, it appears exceedingly likely that radioactivity levels are going to continue to rise and begin impacting the health of the planet. If the amount of radioactivity released into the environment exceeds the reduction due to decay, we will all once again be in the same type of situation we appear to be in today, only it will be radiation poisoning rather than air pollution and related pollutants.
    Actually no. Over the lifetime of the planet radioactivity has been steadily decreasing. A couple of billion years ago there was enough U235 around to have naturally occurring reactors. Google Oklo reactors for more. Point being is that all those isotopes have decayed, just like any fission products we may make will decay- on much shorter time frames. Once they're gone, they're gone. They don't stick around like chemical pollutants. The ones of most concern- transuranics- are fuel for fast reactors and the fission products from those are only detectable above background for 200 years or so. We can isolate those pretty handily.

    You also have to remember, there's hundreds of millions of tons of uranium etc dissolved in seawater, present in rocks, K40 in bananas, Ra226 in Brazil nuts. etc. That's there as background happily decaying all around us. In fact, the biggest airborne release of radioactives in recent history was Mt. St Helens- orders of magnitude larger than any man made release. All the spent fuel in the US would cover a football field 30 feet high. By comparison to what's in the environment naturally, it's a tiny amount.

    If you take a snooze on the beach in Guarapari, Brazil you'll get a higher dose from the monazite sand than if you spent the same time at Fukushima Daiichi. There's a youtube video where a guy visited several places with a dosimeter (including the two mentioned above).



    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
    Jells
  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,218
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    Jamie, I agree that going the way we are currently going to not going to work. That is so very obvious, though there are plenty that still don't agree.
    However, radiation levels are already increasing, Plants have failed due to poor engineering, human error, limitations of the human imagination to see all future possibilities, and just poor maintenance. This is something that will never change....the human factor, until the whole world is made new. Obviously weapons tests and probably numerous small leaks that have gone unreported have added to these levels.
    There are alternatives, some which have been discussed here...the most obvious is simply using power more efficiently, which its clear the U. S. can do, even with conventional readily available technologies. I am talking about true efficiencies of systems as a whole, not the latest "Green" fads. Using current nuclear plants as an example, just how many homes could be heated with the waste heat coming from a single reactor? This waste is nearly unfathomable.
    These methods would at least provide a cushion for other technologies to develop and be implemented. However, over the past 40 years the U. S. mindset seems to have been consume, consume, consume, even to the detriment to oneself, let along the larger community. I never fail to be amazed that large corporations, solely in business to maximize profits, are so deceived by this mindset that they haven't even made the simplest upgrades in energy efficiency to further increase their profits. You can walk into almost any large retail chain store, large office complex, and they haven't even upgraded to LED lighting, let alone upgrading the HVAC systems. The simple paybacks on lighting are generally only a couple years. To put it in language we are both familiar with, their angels have been deceived.
    Somewhere, we have forgotten that the world does not need to be as it is today. Jamie, I believe that the faith we share makes that abundantly clear. It also makes it abundantly clear that humans will continue to make mistakes and that is the core of the problem. Nuclear does not allow much room for human limitation without having very large consequences for the larger community.
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  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
    edited February 2022
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    good point... you can never overestimate the ingenuity of a fool.

    Here's a good one. Test of a sodium cooled fast reactor at INEL. (predecessor to the Integral Fast Reactor mentioned above).

    " Hey, let's run this baby up to full power, disable the controls and turn the coolant pumps off!"
    Watch:https://youtu.be/Sp1Xja6HlIU?t=114

    Spoiler- it turned itself off.

    Almost 40 years ago now. Contemplate where we'd be if we'd continued development.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • Jells
    Jells Member Posts: 566
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    Nuclear does not allow much room for human limitation without having very large consequences for the larger community.

    Sadly this is the core of it. Its not easy to name a major engineering disaster that wasn't a failure to follow design specs, failure to use proper quality materials, failure to follow proper procedures, failure to maintain the structure, or all of the above. Rarely was the dam, building, ship, spacecraft, whatever, poorly designed.

    It seems that the case of the US Navy is the exception that proves the rule, as there are no motivations for any of the above negligences if you have a basically unlimited budget, a situation you'll not often find in civilian projects, unless it's a NYC subway tunnel.
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
    edited February 2022
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    @Jells Light Water Reactors (LWRs) which Rickover developed for the Navy are great for that purpose- small cores - meaning low waste heat rejection requirements, many watchful eyes of technicians and officers, unlimited budgets. Sizing those up to grid power plant levels rather then going with a more forgiving, lower energy density design was, in retrospect, probably not the best design choice.

    Looks like now, 70 years later, we're finally getting out of Rickover's shadow.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,218
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    delcrossv said:

    @Jells Light Water Reactors (LWRs) which Rickover developed for the Navy are great for that purpose- small cores - meaning low waste heat rejection requirements, many watchful eyes of technicians and officers, unlimited budgets. Sizing those up to grid power plant levels rather then going with a more forgiving, lower energy density design was, in retrospect, probably not the best design choice.

    Looks like now, 70 years later, we're finally getting out of Rickover's shadow.

    You just named one of the things I was thinking about in" the world does not need to be as it is". Why do we need huge grids? It would certainly make sense if you could drop in a small reactor at each NYCHA complex and provide both heat and power right there... the grid would be a redundancy or just there to help balance power. However, the current power companies certainly wouldn't like it.
    If you actually think that Heat Pumps are the answer, then you really need to look at the cost of building all those power stations and a much bigger grid. Why not take the grid out of the equation, and just build small scale power stations? Of course these could be gas fired at first and then converted later to other sources and leave the grid alone. You go right back to combined heat and power (back to heat pumps being unnecessary), with the fuel source of your choosing.
    Or another "the world doesn't need to be as it is". Upgrade the thermal performance of the building so existing power grid and plants can handle the load. I bet this is a much more cost effective method of cutting emissions and protecting the tenants from heating outages. A well insulated high population density building with heat recovery ventilation, probably can be self heating just from body heat, cooking showers and electrical use down into the mid- 40s, maybe lower. Compared to a building that starts needing heating at 60F, one needing heating at 45F would reduce seasonal heating energy need by 54% or so. ( I don't have access to NYC Degree data, but used Chicago's).

    Com Ed in Chicago did everything it could to make it impossible or not cost effective for distributed home scale solar to send power back into the grid. They seem to have partially given in, now they are supporting neighborhood solar....still needs a grid and they probably can postpone expanding the current grid capacity. The same goes for the natural gas grid...the state mandated efficiency programs are naturally reducing the load on the decrepit Chicago gas pipeline network. Of course in true U.S. fashion, they have now finally admitted how bad the system is and are now raised rates about 60% in the past few years to pay for 70 years of mismanagement and deferred capital improvement( I've gotten it through more than one source that wooden gas lines were still in use in areas on the northside). Piping is finally getting replaced that should have been replaced around WWII.
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
    delcrossvLarry Weingarten
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
    edited February 2022
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    @The Steam Whisperer I like the idea! Small molten salt reactors, single fuel loading- replace the whole "can" every 50 years. District steam, power and probably could do district chilled water using absorption chillers.

    LOL. wooden gas lines in Old Town wouldn't surprise me. Goes along with the live gas sconces I've found there.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • Jells
    Jells Member Posts: 566
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    @The Steam Whisperer I have a close friend who is working to bring microgrid technology to my area. It's a hard lift against entrenched interests and political cronyism.

    https://microgridknowledge.com/schneider-energy-savings-microgrid-jersey-city/

    I don't think those NYCHA buildings could even be made passive, it would be cheaper to raze them and start fresh. They were built in an era where you regulated the winter temp in your massively overheated building by opening your window. Even today new construction in my city is so badly regulated that new tenants in badly insulated hi rise rentals with PTACs are shocked at their electric bills.
    wmgeorge
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,479
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    I have no doubt we will crack the fusion nut at some point but we need a low carbon source of energy NOW, not some day. We could have gen 4 fission plants up[ and running in 5 years if we had the will to do it In my view solid fuel nuclear was a good first step but it should have just been the first step. Government has to help industry by letting them build plants without saddling them with layer after layer of regulations that drive costs through the roof - we did it to develop the bomb and we can certainly do this if we want to. I still remember working on some of the early NASA programs that got us to the moon and I remember standing on a mountain in the summer of '69 thinking there are men walking on the moon I'm staring at.

    We need to get off the solid fuel bandwagon and seriously pursue liquid fueled reactors that can burn up 96% of the nuclear fuel instead of the 1% plants using fuel rods manage to consume. That would result in 95% less waste and most of that waste would be low order waste that does not have to be sequestered for millennia. Getting water out of the reactor means we can operate at low pressure, we don't need hideously expensive pressure vessels along with all the high pressure plumbing inside the reactor. We developed this technology in the 60's and now the Chinese are going to build it and sell it back to us - good jobs down the drain.

    I am heartened to see a new Gen 4 plant is going to be built in Wyoming with the backing of Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. Small modular reactors that can be built at a plant will ensure repeatable quality and and you can cluster them to get whatever capacity you need. I'm not sure that plants strategy is the best but it's a start and hopefully others will start other programs.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Eqe-tRZo5A

    Bob
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
    wmgeorgedelcrossv
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,430
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    Whole bunch of things here, but I'll only hit one or two. A couple of people have mentioned that one of the reasons why the US Navy has had pretty good luck with nuclear reactors for the last 70 years or so is unlimited money. Don't they wish. And someone else mentioned getting out from under Admiral Rickover's shadow. This may not be a good thing. The main reason is that the Navy has zero tolerance for fools and idiots in the officers and men who run the reactors and the ships. You screw up just once, and you're gone. There is no touchy-feely hand holding here, no safe spaces, no let's try it again, and total personal responsibility, Kind of different from the civilian world (and one reason why vets sometimes have a hard time). I'm afraid this culture is changing, but that's for a different forum.

    Another has mentioned the malign influence of "the grid". Like most technology, it has its problems. However, it's there for a generally good purpose, and will actually become more important -- not less -- as more renewable power is brought on line. It will also become much more complex to run, and much less robust as power generation becomes more distributed, but again, that's really a topic for another forum. Suffice it to say that the engineering challenges involved in trying to get distributed power and microgrids to work together are formidable, and some of the proposed solutions such as depending on satellite timing for synchronization are extremely vulnerable. However...

    The suggestion to raze all the old stuff and start all over again is, in my humble opinion, unforgivably wasteful of material resources, although -- again really for a different forum -- there might be much to be said from the point of view of the lives of the occupants for doing so; central planning has never improved lives.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    wmgeorgedelcrossv
  • wmgeorge
    wmgeorge Member Posts: 222
    edited February 2022
    Options
    Well for information I received an email yesterday from "The News" a HVAC publication saying that new distribution of Natural Gas was going to be stopped, does anyone else have more to add on this? If that is true, tomorrow is already here for NG use. But its seems its limited to just a few states, California is one.
    Old retired Commercial HVAC/R guy in Iowa. Master electrician.
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,729
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    A couple towns in CA and one in MA put a limit on new natural gas installations for new construction. The NG lobby would have you believe the sky is falling, don't believe it.
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
    edited February 2022
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    Whole bunch of things here, but I'll only hit one or two. A couple of people have mentioned that one of the reasons why the US Navy has had pretty good luck with nuclear reactors for the last 70 years or so is unlimited money. Don't they wish. And someone else mentioned getting out from under Admiral Rickover's shadow.


    The suggestion to raze all the old stuff and start all over again is, in my humble opinion, unforgivably wasteful of material resources, although -- again really for a different forum -- there might be much to be said from the point of view of the lives of the occupants for doing so; central planning has never improved lives.

    @Jamie Hall To clarify, "Getting out from Rickover's shadow" was solely in the context of getting away from LWR's for new builds. I don't think anyone discounts Navy quality training and watchfulness. Son's on a sub and while not a NUC, deals with them daily.

    Same with razing old stuff. Run present plants to end of life, but keep in mind what's running now is Gen 1 and Gen 2. Generation 3 reactors are what you get when you are getting to the end of a design type. Note the ever escalating costs at the Vogtle build. Those are the costs of adding safeties rather than starting from a new paradigm. Gen IV is close to being ready for prime time and we should be pushing those designs to the forefront for new construction. [/soapbox]

    Seems Gates and Buffet think it's ready now GE PRISM + Thermal storage.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • wmgeorge
    wmgeorge Member Posts: 222
    edited February 2022
    Options
    CO2 is heaver than air. So how can it get up in the stratosphere to cause global warming? Two theory's I found. The sunlight hits it and it vibrates, causing part of it to warm and rise up,?? the other is flue gases are warm and it rises with those gases. Simple flue gases... cool them off to ambient temperature. Surely as smart as those folks are, there are solutions. Coal pollutes a given, natural gas is clean and efficient. Or start building nuclear plants.
    Old retired Commercial HVAC/R guy in Iowa. Master electrician.
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,544
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    @wmgeorge, look into Antoine Lavoisier. He's the fella who discovered (and named) oxygen and hydrogen, and also invented the Periodic Table of the Elements and helped invent the Metric System. In his spare time, he explained why the gases that make up our atmosphere don't separate like a seven-layer cake.

    He had a tragic ending.

    More about him here, if you have the time to listen:
    https://heatinghelp.com/dead-men-tales/henrys-law/
    Retired and loving it.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,776
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    I thought Dmitri Mendeleev gave us the Periodic Table?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,544
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    Retired and loving it.
  • rsilvers
    rsilvers Member Posts: 182
    edited February 2022
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    jad3675 said:

    Jells said:


    In the back of my work shop, I have a 1947 GE refrigerator that my dad bought used on the side of the road 50 years ago. Someone has to explain to me how something with a motor and compressor can run trouble free and do so continuously for 70 years without a failure. The only sound it makes is a tiny "ting" sound when the thermostat clicks. Still ice cold.

    John

    It's the one on the right of this catalog page. It's right around $1600 in today's dollars.




    That is 7.7 cubic feet for $1600 ($2000 now with the elective inflation). A 10 cubic foot is $360 now at Best Buy, so 1/5 the cost. The old one would have had to have been $30 to be an equivalent cost to one today.

  • Jells
    Jells Member Posts: 566
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    "Extensive electrical work, including replacing the electrical panels in each unit and the centralized panels in the basement, will ensure the building can handle the widespread installation of the pumps and induction stoves — “costly upgrades” identified in NYCHA’s strategic plan to reduce its carbon emissions."

    Ah yes, those “costly upgrades”. We all know a car built from replacement parts would cost $1m, so how much would a LEEDS building cost if you had to start with a 50-70 year old bunker? Lets not forget the cost of temporary housing in hotels for all those residents while you rebuild their building from the inside out.
  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,218
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    delcrossv said:

    @The Steam Whisperer I like the idea! Small molten salt reactors, single fuel loading- replace the whole "can" every 50 years. District steam, power and probably could do district chilled water using absorption chillers.

    LOL. wooden gas lines in Old Town wouldn't surprise me. Goes along with the live gas sconces I've found there.

    Back to the question of completely decommisioning a nuclear plant. Do the numbers include the cost of making all the former fuel safe again...not just burying it and expecting that it won't be disturbed for a couple thousand years or more?
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  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,218
    edited February 2022
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    Jells said:

    "Extensive electrical work, including replacing the electrical panels in each unit and the centralized panels in the basement, will ensure the building can handle the widespread installation of the pumps and induction stoves — “costly upgrades” identified in NYCHA’s strategic plan to reduce its carbon emissions."

    Ah yes, those “costly upgrades”. We all know a car built from replacement parts would cost $1m, so how much would a LEEDS building cost if you had to start with a 50-70 year old bunker? Lets not forget the cost of temporary housing in hotels for all those residents while you rebuild their building from the inside out.
    From the studies I've seen, starting with a "bunker" is actually a very good ( if not the best) place to start. Probably the most efficient building system is one with high mass inside a well insulated shell. I bet the NYCHA buildings are all modular designs, with a large number of them being the same, so hanging a new highly insulated curtain wall outside the existing masonry construction would probably be very cost efficient.
    That high mass allows "undersized" equipment for heating and cooling to be used, since the peak heat loss temperature will never reach the inside of the building because the thermal mass acts as the thermal flywheel. For typical 12 inch thick masonry walls it take about 3 days for the heat loss at the inside of the insulated wall to even begin to impact the interior side of the masonry wall. The design standard could be revised to average lowest temperature over a 72 hour period for the walls of this type of construction and then add in instantaneous loads for ventilation losses and losses at window and doors.
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    delcrossvlkstdl
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 3,332
    edited February 2022
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    Hello @ethicalpaul , to your comment about falling skies, about 40 jurisdictions in the US have some sort of gas ban. Here's a little more info about the US and Europe:


    Yours, Larry
  • wmgeorge
    wmgeorge Member Posts: 222
    edited February 2022
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    You can purchase this book on Amazon the Kindle version is about $12 Hot Talk, Cold Science: Global Warming's Unfinished Debate
    By S. Fred Singer. Reading it on my IPhone
    Old retired Commercial HVAC/R guy in Iowa. Master electrician.
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
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    delcrossv said:

    @The Steam Whisperer I like the idea! Small molten salt reactors, single fuel loading- replace the whole "can" every 50 years. District steam, power and probably could do district chilled water using absorption chillers.

    LOL. wooden gas lines in Old Town wouldn't surprise me. Goes along with the live gas sconces I've found there.

    Back to the question of completely decommisioning a nuclear plant. Do the numbers include the cost of making all the former fuel safe again...not just burying it and expecting that it won't be disturbed for a couple thousand years or more?
    "Disposal" of spent fuel is, by law, the sole purview of the Federal Government. So no, it's not included in Trust costs (although the utilities DO pay the feds for disposal as part of their operating license). Problem is , the Feds have been sitting on their hands for 50 years and "repurposing" those payments into the General Fund. Sound familiar?

    The way to make spent fuel "safe" is to burn it in fast reactors, not burying it. IMO burial of spent LWR fuel is like filling your gas tank, driving around the block and then putting the gas back into the tank at the gas station- and paying for the privilege.

    Burying transuranics is pure politically driven idiocy.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,430
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    There appears to ne some concern about the costs associated with nuclear plants, both to build them and to decommission them.

    I have to admit that I find this somewhat humorous. The costs are high, I'll grant. But -- any industry which is obliged to employ ten or so lawyers for every productive employee, just to fight off the lawyers and activists trying to destroy it, is going to find the costs are high. It's a bit ingenuous, then, for the same folks employing the activists trying to destroy the industry to complain about how much it costs.

    As I have pointed out before, the technology to decommission -- including safe and permanent disposal of all radioactive materials -- is there. it isn't expensive. It's proven. It can't be used because of a highly active and well-financed opposition to anything to do with nuclear power. Some of the opposition is fear founded on ignorance. A good bit of it seems to be a highly profitable operation for the folks operating it.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    delcrossv
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,729
    edited February 2022
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    Hello @ethicalpaul , to your comment about falling skies, about 40 jurisdictions in the US have some sort of gas ban.

    Thanks Larry. OK 40 with "some sort" of "ban". If you look at those "bans" they are quite narrow, such as "no new construction can have a gas hookup in this fully developed town where there is almost no new construction anyway".

    The scary diagram you posted is showing in red all the places where gas bans have been outlawed. And it shows entire states in blue, even though it's a tiny number of municipalities in each of those states that have "banned" gas in some way. As I said, gas isn't going anywhere.

    People freaking out about such tiny harmless steps forward are why nothing can get done, forget nuclear, people don't even want to minimally limit gas.
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
    Larry Weingarten
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
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    @ethicalpaul "People freaking out about such tiny harmless steps forward are why nothing can get done, forget nuclear, people don't even want to minimally limit gas."

    It's probably the whole "mandated from above" format that is the issue. If something were cheaper, better and more convenient than gas, people would flock to it. No edicts required.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,776
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    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    delcrossvCanucker
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 748
    edited February 2022
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    Jells said:


    delcrossv said:

    @ethicalpaul "People freaking out about such tiny harmless steps forward are why nothing can get done, forget nuclear, people don't even want to minimally limit gas."

    It's probably the whole "mandated from above" format that is the issue. If something were cheaper, better and more convenient than gas, people would flock to it. No edicts required.


    Such is the conundrum of externalizing your costs. Fossil fuels are cheap because the consumers are not paying for the externalities like political instability, health risks, environmental degradation and climate change. This is why we need a carbon tax. Then people would be flocking to alternatives in a free market.
    or something to account for those costs. Agreed.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,776
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    I'm just saying..



    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    wmgeorgeratiodelcrossv
  • Jells
    Jells Member Posts: 566
    edited February 2022
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    delcrossv said:
    delcrossv said:
    @ethicalpaul "People freaking out about such tiny harmless steps forward are why nothing can get done, forget nuclear, people don't even want to minimally limit gas." It's probably the whole "mandated from above" format that is the issue. If something were cheaper, better and more convenient than gas, people would flock to it. No edicts required.
    Such is the conundrum of externalizing your costs. Fossil fuels are cheap because the consumers are not paying for the externalities like political instability, health risks, environmental degradation and climate change. This is why we need a carbon tax. Then people would be flocking to alternatives in a free market.
    or something to account for those costs. Agreed.
    Trying to assign actual costs would not be feasible or practical. What is the cost of continuing to support petro-autocracies like Russia and Saudi Arabia, or kleptocracies like Nigeria?  How much more should a 2022 gallon of gas cost to pay for the damage of climate change 80 years from now?

    It's far easier and probably less costly to simply assign the carbon tax that makes fossil fuels uncompetitive with the more mature alternatives.
  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,218
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    delcrossv said:

    delcrossv said:

    @The Steam Whisperer I like the idea! Small molten salt reactors, single fuel loading- replace the whole "can" every 50 years. District steam, power and probably could do district chilled water using absorption chillers.

    LOL. wooden gas lines in Old Town wouldn't surprise me. Goes along with the live gas sconces I've found there.

    Back to the question of completely decommissioning a nuclear plant. Do the numbers include the cost of making all the former fuel safe again...not just burying it and expecting that it won't be disturbed for a couple thousand years or more?
    "Disposal" of spent fuel is, by law, the sole purview of the Federal Government. So no, it's not included in Trust costs (although the utilities DO pay the feds for disposal as part of their operating license). Problem is , the Feds have been sitting on their hands for 50 years and "repurposing" those payments into the General Fund. Sound familiar?

    The way to make spent fuel "safe" is to burn it in fast reactors, not burying it. IMO burial of spent LWR fuel is like filling your gas tank, driving around the block and then putting the gas back into the tank at the gas station- and paying for the privilege.

    Burying transuranics is pure politically driven idiocy.
    That 20 years national GNP estimate is based upon conversion of that spent fuel to safe materials. This cost is not very likely to be just something pulled out of the hat. I had the honor of learning under some of these brightest and broadest minds of the time and when questions such as these came to light, a trip to the nuclear physics and engineering departments was made to try to provide some attempt to uncover this cost. This would of been around circa 1975, so I know things can change, but this cost, whatever it is, appears to be completely left out of the published decomissioning costs. "Just give it to the government and they will just make the problem disappear."
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  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,218
    edited February 2022
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    Jells said:


    delcrossv said:


    delcrossv said:

    @ethicalpaul "People freaking out about such tiny harmless steps forward are why nothing can get done, forget nuclear, people don't even want to minimally limit gas."

    It's probably the whole "mandated from above" format that is the issue. If something were cheaper, better and more convenient than gas, people would flock to it. No edicts required.

    Such is the conundrum of externalizing your costs. Fossil fuels are cheap because the consumers are not paying for the externalities like political instability, health risks, environmental degradation and climate change. This is why we need a carbon tax. Then people would be flocking to alternatives in a free market.

    or something to account for those costs. Agreed.

    Trying to assign actual costs would not be feasible or practical. What is the cost of continuing to support petro-autocracies like Russia and Saudi Arabia, or kleptocracies like Nigeria?  How much more should a 2022 gallon of gas cost to pay for the damage of climate change 80 years from now?

    It's far easier and probably less costly to simply assign the carbon tax that makes fossil fuels uncompetitive with the more mature alternatives.

    Yes, it is a very complex and difficult question....however, it is ignored in nearly all circles. Just acknowledging that there are these additional costs and attempting to estimate them would help direct us to some better solutions.
    This problem is reflected in the NYCHA's report pushing heat pumps....must of these external costs have been ignored and need to be defined and at least approximated before hug sums are spent on potentially very poor decisions.
    We are fortuanate that there are many here that can stretch thier minds to begin to see that the problem is not as simple as" heat pumps have a COP of 3.5 and gas fired is only at best .95, therefore heat pumps are over 3.5 times more efficient that gas fired".
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    Larry Weingartendelcrossv
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