From: "Sir Charles W. Shults III"
References: <firstname.lastname@example.org> <email@example.com> <firstname.lastname@example.org> <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: eer
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Date: Sat, 26 Oct 2002 16:21:45 GMT
NNTP-Posting-Date: Sat, 26 Oct 2002 12:21:45 EDT
Organization: RoadRunner - Central Florida
There are other solutions too- for instance, an "exhausted" fuel rod is
simply below optimum power generating capacity. Around 60% or so is still
useful fuel, it just needs to be extracted and put back in service. Of the
remaining 40%, around 1% to 5% is hard gamma emitters- remove those and the rest
is stuff that burns itself out very rapidly.
Put that stuff in storage for 6 months and it's landfill- no longer a
threat. Or use it in Phoenix style reactors and produce power from it. The
remaining small percentage is long term stuff with half lives in the hundreds or
thousands of years. A number of good uses exist for it.
For one, press it into pencil sized rods, sealed in stainless steel capsules
about 3 inches thick, and throw them in wastewater treatment plants. In a
couple of days, the water is sterilized. The upside is that the water tank and
water mass act to shield the radiation. And anyone stupid enough to try and
remove it will die. Darwin rules!
Or, glassify this material into large caltrops- drop them in the ocean
around mineral and nutrient rich deep currents. They slightly heat the water
around them, causing an upwelling of food for phytoplankton and krill. This
causes an interesting form of pollution called fish. Also, this puts the
material in a place where it cannot be gotten to without immense resources.
This is a beginning- there are many places where we need a long term, low
level heat source that will not pollute or require maintenance. Ocean bottoms
sealed into a glassy state is a great place for this waste, because it cannot
leach out, it won't dissolve in anything, and you don't worry about pedestrians
or terrorists getting it.
Not only that, but it can actually improve the state of the oceans and our
food supply. So many people see gloom and doom, but I see opportunities here.
We are only limited by our cleverness in dealing with the situation. Nuclear
waste is an extremely high potential material- we can do so much with it and
that may actually pay back far more than we invest in power generation. That
ends and waste "problems" such as long term storage, by putting the material to
work in places and means that are inherently safe.
After all, the core of the Earth is driven by nuclear meltdown and we are
living quite well because of it.
My robotics, space and CGI web page - http://home.cfl.rr.com/aichip