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Old 10-24-2015, 03:24 AM   #21 (permalink)
oil pan 4
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Originally Posted by UFO View Post
Sorry, no. Nuclear waste continues to build up and be hazardous to life for millenia to come. Direct solar in the form of wind, biomass, hydro, PV, concentration and tidal is the way to go if one is concerned with sustainability.
The hazardous life lasting thousands of years only happens when the fuel is used once, 5% to 16% of the fissile fuel is consumed and it is thrown away.
When the fuel is recycled and the waste isotopes are concentrated they lose 99.9% of their radioactivity after 40 years.

The raw waste is very unstable and requires continued cooling water. As a bonus the longer it sits around the more unstable it becomes. The sooner the waste and useable fissile fuel are separated the better it is for everyone.
The concentrated waste is actually more stable than the raw waste that is still loaded with uranium and plutonium.

The waste being left to be hazardous for thousands is the product of ignorant, reckless, careless, irresponsible, politically motivated people running our nuclear program. The only reason it is this way is because people chose to leave it this way.

Uranium/Plutonium fuel cycle will last up to 300 to 500 years, Thorium at least 1000 years. Sustainability is not an issue. Wind, solar, hydro, coal will hopefully all be obsolete by then.
The funky rare earth elements used to make solar panels and high strength rare earth magnets will be long gone or become very hard to find long before the thorium runs out.

Again on the subject of the horrible nuclear waste that everyone seems to be afraid of and/or not understand:
The weird thing with Thorium's main long lived "waste" isotope plutonium 248, is actually not really "waste". It is in demand for deep space exploration. Turns out its a pretty good nuclear fuel.

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Last edited by oil pan 4; 10-24-2015 at 03:39 AM..
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