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back to article Nuke support in UK hits record high

Public support for nuclear energy has reached an all-time high in the UK, less than a year after the Fukushima incident. There is an interesting gender gap, though. Pollsters Ipsos MORI, who buttonholed about 1,000 Brits last month for its survey, found that 40 per cent of the sample [PDF] now hold favourable views of nuclear …

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That's cos Forgemasters are dee-daas and therefore thick.

If instead of trying to borrow 80M they had bought derivatives in a credit swap in wippet futures the government would have given them 80Bn to bail them out when the deal went bad.

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Unhappy

AC@12:32

"I suspect you know as well as I do that there aren't enough results in to give a meaningful average, but based on Olkiluoto and Flamanville, it doesn't look good."

True. However since the UK is fairly backward in this area I was thinking of the *previous* generation of French nukes, which AFAIU *were* built on a big enough scale that their production became "standardized" (insofar as anything this large and complex can be) and generate most of the French electricity.

"E.g. Sheffield Forgemasters who do some of the critical heavy engineering. In 2010 the Millionaires Cabinet refused them an £80M *loan* to pay for new manufacturing equipment and capacity - that £80M *loan* is barely more than the Millionaire's Cabinet is proposing be *donated* for a flipping Royal Yacht."

This did look a *lot* like one of the Dark Lord's scorched earth jobs. Promise them whatever and if we win we'll sort it out later. this was before the note from the outgoing Tresuray Sec that "There's no money." It was also before the bank bailout.

I agree that £80m is *chickenfeed* for a global resource that would be the 2nd of its kind *anywhere*. But the question has to be asked if what their (prospective) order book looked like to take to the banks and why if its *such* a good deal they did not finance it themselves?

Note I'm *very* aware that in the UK evening having a *monopoly* position on supplying a product with *unique* capabilities is not enough to getting funding from UK banks.

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Anonymous Coward

The problem with tidal is probably the same as for wind and solar - it is highly variable so you end up having (and paying for) conventional generation anyway. The barmy thing is some wind farms generate excess power and get paid NOT to generate.

Even with ambitious plans for renewables they are unlikely to reach 15-20% of total power requirement or perhaps not even keep pace with the increase in power requirement as the economy and population grows. That still leaves a lot of conventional power generation and the choice comes down to:

1. replace carbon burning with nuclear power stations.

2. install more carbon burners.

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Thumb Up

Anyone with a brain (sorry sun readers) knows that Japan's nuclear was a horrible set of circumstances that the UK just won't see any time soon, unless some massive unpredictable event happens. We don't get earthquakes on a scale or frequency like them and we don't get tsunamis. (If we did it would have to wipeout ireland first or come via scotland.) And assuming we didn't do what britain always does and go cheap, and built them to the same spec Japan has, we would be ok.

So most people realise that as has been said it is our only real option in the short term, until fusion or we have built tidal where we can, filled every hill with wind power and covered ever roof with solar panels. (or of course stopped everyone buying rechargable gadgets and anything that needs power)

Now if only the stupid parliament would realise this and just sign us up to start building them before we are in real poo.

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Remember this...

The nay sayers only have to right once....the gain sayers have to be right all the time!

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Mushroom

No free lunches...

It's not just Fukushima, Chernobyl, or even our own Dounreay beach that makes me wary of nuclear power. It's a simple question of Impact multiplied by Risk. On a scale of 1 to 10, the impact of a nuclear disaster is a 10. The current risk is 0, and as we all know, zero times anything is, well, zero.

Simples? Well... Expand the scope of that risk to include decommissioning of obselete power plants and maintaining nuclear waste (extrapolated over a million years). Add in a few factors such as the possibility of lack of future skills or resources, geographical instability, a malign regieme seizing power, or even simple human error. Now your risk model is looking a little less secure, the impact still 10, and the costs don't look so great either.

The other issue is the supply of the raw material. We're said to be running out of coal, but a quick Google suggests that coal supplies will probably outlast Uranium supplies.

I know there's no easy answers (unless you count hooking prisoners up to bicycles) but thought I'd chuck my $0.02 in there.

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Geological instability, even.

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Go

The impact at Fukushima

Is not ten, Its not even one.

Of all the costs and the loss of life in N Japan, the Fukushima incident has been less than a drop in the ocean.

Even Chernobyl, ha snot been a big killer...

When you consider it took an event that killed upwards of 20,000 people to reduce a nuclear power station to the level where it hasn't killed anyone at all, but has merely had to be shut down permanently and the temporary loss of less land area than any equivalent renewable installation would have PERMANENTLY rendered uninhabitable, you have to say that your arguments actually are in favour of nuclear power, not against it.

The worst that can happen is a lot less worse than not having it at all - if the AGW warmists are to be believed, anyway.

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tidal isnt as phasal as solar and wind... and more importantly, its phases arnt tied in to the same things. (eg. we use a lot of power for heating... during winter and overnight when theres no sun).

the greens complain about tidal too though, because of the poor fishies, and the 'damage' it does to the aesthetics of a place. (incidently the same problem we had when we wanted to put wind turbines into our top field... its nice and high, open space, perfect for wind! oh but no, because of meeting those requirements it fails the next one - people would be able to see them.)

as for the male/female disparity.... i think its a couple of things. firstly, women *are* more nurturing and caring - thus the chance of nuclear problems has mroe of an impact. but i think the main thing is the sad state of affairs in this country that leads to most girls being discouraged from getting a scientific education, and instead studying subjects such as art and the humanities.

of course, tidal does have another problem - every time we use tiday power, we slow down the moon a bit, if we all start using it then within a few years us and the moon will crash into each other ./nod. trufax.

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Meh

@Tieger

"of course, tidal does have another problem - every time we use tiday power, we slow down the moon a bit, if we all start using it then within a few years us and the moon will crash into each other ./nod. trufax."

True

And in a couple of *million* years it was being to become a cause for concern.

I'm sort of hoping that the human race will have come up with something else by then.

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Mushroom

NHK has reported that the reactors were damaged BEFORE the tsunami hit.

Here's some other stuff to contemplate (NRC emails via FOIA)...

NRC email showing Iodine-131 (which has an 8 day half life) INCREASING in the USA in early April compared to March.

http://enformable.com/2011/11/april-12th-2011-i-131-sampling-results-in-us-levels-increase/

http://enformable.com/2011/09/april-2nd-2011-reactor-1-uncontrolled-depressurizationleak-dose-rate-of-27-rhr-found-radiation-level-at-reactor-2-measured-over-100-rhr/

http://enformable.com/2012/01/march-17th-2011-jsdf-helicopter-crews-report-dose-rates-of-375-rhr-300-ft-above-reactor-3/

http://enformable.com/2012/01/march-16th-2011-japan-reports-5-persons-have-received-lethal-radiation-doses/

http://enformable.com/2012/01/march-23rd-2011-suspect-3-ft-of-salt-in-bottom-of-reactor-vessel-sfp-lasted-3-days/

Lots more...

http://enformable.com/category/foia/nrc-foia/fukushima-disaster/march-2011/

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Silver badge

I know it's convenient, but posting references from a single site really really harms your argument.

Especially when that site states that they are against Nuclear as a 'green energy' on their about-us page.

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Mushroom

Well, if you're going to call into question NRC emails, then I guess the only answer is for us to send you and your family on a 2 week holiday to the plant surroundings and have you report back in 20 years time.

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@Drew

At what point did I call into question NRC emails?

Read my comment again, I pointed out that using a single site for multiple sources weakens your argument. I'd imagine a lot of commentards will have done what I did;

Load enformable.com

click About Us

Quick read - hmmm short on time so can't read every link you posted. Oh look, 'About Us' admits their bias against Nuclear.

I'll aim to get around to reading the sources, but a quick scan is all I generally have time to do.

We live near Sizewell so if you want to send me on a free holiday feel free!

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Anonymous Coward

Risk not factored in

Nuclear power would be too expensive if the operators weren't exempt from requiring to insure their plants for all liabilities.

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Headmaster

proof by assertion?

Oh no it wouldn't be.

I could say with more substance that windpower/wavepower/solarpower would be far too incredibly expensive (it is already too expensive) if the operators had to guarantee reliable continuous supply, such as any conventional or nuclear plant can deliver as part of its very nature.

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Mushroom

Nuclear Fission...

is a stopgap, nothing more. We need it to tide us over whilst we get Fusion working reliably and safely. That said, personally I would rather have a Fission reactor next door than a Fusion reactor. One is a contained (and massively slowed down) atomic bomb, the other is a contained HYDROGEN bomb. :-)

Coal, Oil & Gas (even fracked methane) are all cheap but are CO2 producers on a massive scale.

Renewables have to be subsidised even more than the French subsidise their Nuke industry.

So, everybody has a choice. Either we go Nuclear (Fission, then Fusion) or else stop having babies! Give a woman those 2 choices and see which way she votes?

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@Big Boomer

Er.....no. A fission reactor is not a slowed down atomic bomb. This is the kind of talk that causes problems. A fission reactor cannot become a bomb even if it is allowed to go uncontrolled. The Uranium within a fission reactor is at a whole different level of refinement than that used in an atomic bomb and cannot achieve the same feat. Now, a fusion reactor is, in many ways, a controlled fusion (e.g. thermonuclear) device. However, again that is scaremongering to a large extent. It's interesting how a fusion reactor is sold as being unlimited, clean and environmentally friendly etc.etc. However, what they don' tell you, is that it is a plasma being held in a magnetic field. The slightest fault in that magnetic field would result in the uncontained release of plasma. Look at the area around afterwards and you might not think it's as nice as people make out.

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Facepalm

The plasma in a fusion reactor is at militorr range pressures, a breach would result in a slight WHOOSH sound of air being SUCKED INTO the reaction chamber, followed immediately by the reaction grinding to a halt as the fusion materials nuclei get scattered off air molecules.

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@Gabor Laszlo

This depends a bit on what type of fusion reactor vessel you're talking about. Yes, the reaction stops pretty much immediately, but I wasn't talking about the contents of the torus etc. Most of the designs have interesting engineering around the central reactor vessel. For instance, some use liquid Lithium as a coolant. Now, a failure of the reactor vessel using magnetic containment could result in an explosion of the magnet. This could be contained within a building, but the liquid Lithium coolant could well be damaged. If it is damaged, a fire within this Lithium could easily occur. Do you think a fire in a significant amount of Lithium would be good for the surrounding area.

I'm not saying we shouldn't use fusion, but the common information put out is fission equals nuclear bomb, fusion equals perfectly same, lovely and green. I was just trying to say that an accident at a fusion plant would probably not be nice for the surrounding area either. Whole differerent set of issues and it depends on the reactor design, but people should stop thinking fusion is the panacea. It has safety issues as well.

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Trollface

Ah, you think a Tokamak will ever break even? I'm betting on Polywell :D

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Trollface

Some great questions of our time.

Ah, well that's a good question. I have no idea which will happen first or even if one will and one won't. One thing I can be sure of though........it'll cost a lot of money to find out :-) What's the latest budget estimate on ITER?

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Meh

Crap science

The only damage would be mild thermal scarring to the toroidal containment area as the plasma is not dense and in the absence of containment, rapidly cools and contracts as fusion stops. Maybe a slight breach in some cases, but not a huge show stopper. Anyone got any evidence to suggest things would be otherwise, I'd be interested to hear.

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Trollface

That's actually a good point: who's footing the bill?

Tokamaks are run by universities and research labs, they are fascinating physics experiments one can endlessly fiddle with, and assure the funding of their department for decades.

Polywell is funded by the US Navy, interested in a compact, failsafe power source.

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Facepalm

NIMBYism?

somehow I suspect that if the question was not

"do you have a (un) / favourable view of nuclear power"

, but instead,

"Do you have a (un) / favourable view of a nuclear power station being built 20 miles of where you live",

the positives would take a nosedive

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I'd love it.

They'll need an IT contractor I'm sure.

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Better buy a generator... the lights are going out in 2015!

Too many years of faffing around... too many years of putting of the decision for more nuclear... too much burning gas to make electricity (which is just plain stupid)... and now the lights are going to go out!

The government knows about that they euphemistically called "unserved energy demand" and it'll hit us about 2015-ish...

Should have started building next generation nuclear generation plants 10 years ago and been bringing them online now...

I have an 11KW standby generator... have you bought yours yet?

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Yag
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FAIL

Foresight...

Did you also bought enough petrol to fuel it for the next 25 years?

Did you also bought weapons and hired some mercs to protect your investment?

Yeah, you're ready, indeed...

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Radioactive waste

People keep banging on about the amount of radioactive waste produced by nuclear power, maybe someone can answer a question I've had for a while - "does the nuclear industry actually "create" more radioactive material than it had to begin with"

Uranium is mined in South Africa/Russia or wherever and is extracted from thousands of tons of rock/soil, if we were to take the radioactive waste back to the place where it was mined and it was ground very fine and mixed back in to the soil extracted, would the soil be more radioactive than it was originally?

I think the problem with the waste is that it is concentrated in a small area, if it could be diluted would the area be more or less radioactive overall than before it was extracted?

Maybe we could have a ship in the center of the Pacific mixing the waste into the seawater. If it was diluted sufficiently in enough water it would probably be undetectable above the baseline radioactivity of the water.

Or maybe I'm wrong! Can someone enlighten me?

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Yag
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It's... complicated.

More or less radioactive material is not the only relevant information - the actual activity of the material and the kind of radiation emited are major informations.

- The half life for uranium 235 - eg. the time needed for half of it to decay to some kind of Thorium and one alpha radiation - is 700 millions years.

- The thorium 231 from the decay of the uranium is ALSO radioactive, and have a half life of about a single day, yielding some proactinium-231 and a beta ray.

- The proactinium then decay (half life of 32,760 years) to actinium 227 and 'nother alpha ray most of the times, which then decay to... etc, etc

Those decays and the overall age of the universe explains why U235 is only roughly 1% of the natural occuring uranium. Most of it is U238, which have a half life of. 4 and a half billion year.

Uranium itself is not that dangerous radiation-wise (it's still a toxic metal, same as mercury or lead), it was used for centuries for glazing yellow glass and is even sometime used as a... radiation shell against more active elements.

Fissions products, on the other hand, are significantly more active.

For example, the half life of the well known Caesium 137 is a measly 30 years. This means that Caesium is actually 230 000 times more radioactive than the uranium 235, uranium 235 which was only 1% of the extracted uranium.

Even worse, the dreaded Iodine-131 have a 8 DAYS half life... But in this case, the very short half life may also a boon - it quickly decay to stable elements and stop posing a radioactive threat...

I'm sure you can now figure why swapping 1 ton of uranium for 1 ton of highly active fission products is not that a good idea...

(NOTE : I'm not a nuclear phycisist, there is certainly some errors in this text, in which case I'ld love to have a better analysis from a professional)

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Flame

How easy it must be

To only have to read headlines for news, and ignore the governments themselves stating how horrific, and how the issue has not been resolved in Fukushima. Stick with IT tech, and stay away from hobby news, you all do not do enough research to be pushing these purely subjective opinions.

Sorry but the register is pretty useless when it comes to non-IT news, at least when using this article as an example. The complete lack of information behind the articles like this, makes the good articles that aren't IT related have a harder time standing up.

You guys do know the reactors are still criticle, right? Based on your local nuclear genius, the kinds of radiation given off is only from an exposed core melting down... and after that article last year, you all finally admitted something worse was happening, but still played it down. So there is not danger unless it melts down, and until there are signs of certain radioactive isotopes, there is no need to panic... OK we found traces of these elements, but please, don't panic... and if you even show a slight hint of worry, we will ridicule you until you either kill yourself, or give up completely. Merry Christmas.

Plutonium detected in the southern hemisphere from Fukushima, what are the implications of the detection of such a material? You know, but I'm sure there's going to be superstitious people who believe Plutonium is a freaking vitamin.

Good Luck.

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FAIL

@Stephen Sherry

What an hysterical posting.

You say criticle rather than critical and from the text obviously have no idea what 'critical' means in a nuclear fission sense.

You then criticise everyone else, in a holier than though way, complaing about people not doing enough research etc.etc. and then post a reply with absolutely no links to appropriate research or any technical information at all. The majority of your post is a ranting paragraph!!

Finally, I do know the implications of detecting Plutonium in the southern hemisphere from Fukushima, but only if you add some actual information, such as concentration etc., which is all important. At very low concentrations, it doesn't matter at all. Indeed, it is even found in nature at very low concentrations. Perhaps you would be better off understanding the Radon that appears in peoples houses and cellars and how much more dangerous that is, although most people know nothing about it.

Fail. Well obviously. Epic one might say.

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Mushroom

At the risk of repeating myself...

I'll be happy to go with nuclear power when it's so safe that Battersea power station is converted to nuclear generation.

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RE Battersea

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/JASON_reactor

Safe enough to run a little one in greenwich until 1996.

India and china will save us, they are investing in research into thorium breeder designs, once they have perfected them im sure they will be happy to come over here and build them in return for massive amounts of cash.

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WTF?

Waste of time

Why worry?

The general apathy of the public never ceases to amaze. There are several projects around the world generating clean and renewable energy from fission. OK, the Greens amongst us have a point that Pressurised Water Reactor designs of yesteryear are inherently unsafe.

However, newer Generation IV designs are built to 'Fail Safe'. Furthermore, India and China are leading the world in new Thorium reactor development. The safe, clean and abundant power these provide aside, the money that can be can be made from producing and installing these designs in other countries under licence is potentially enormous.

Plus there is a non-proliferation benefit and the possibility of 'burning' harmful actinides using these reactors that would otherwise be disposed of as harmful waste...

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Gold badge
Meh

On fission versus fusion.

Fusion types play down the fact that the interior of the torus *will* become radioactive but all that teleoperated servicing gear and liner replacing hardware is *not* about keeping the vacuum intact.

An article in Science (6/1/12) says the US National Ignition Facility is looking to do a shot whose energy release will equal that consumed by the lasers IE *breakeven*, although they are running behind schedule. They claim its because they have to run more damage tests on nuclear weapons parts (the people who *fund* NIF). Others claim the "indirect drive" system adopted had found unexpected inefficiencies. The original programme called for 3 shots, with the last exceeding input by 5MW (5MJ surely?) but this is claimed to be simple *once* you get to breakeven.

This is a *major* event in fusion feasibility. Of course that still leaves how to *extract* that energy and use it. Getting here has taken c60 years. Lets hope the power scale-up/extraction problem does not take as long to so.

Meanwhile fission has been generating *power* to a national grid (somewhere) since about the same time, although possibly the best design (the molten salt thorium design) remains with *no* incentive for reactor companies to develop.

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Anonymous Coward

"look at what the Chinese are doing with the CAP1000"

Are the Chinese better with nuclear reactor design and construction than they are with high speed rail design and construction (or even simple stuff like making safe toys) ?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-16345592 (28 Dec 2011) says

"A bullet train crash which killed 40 people in China in July was caused by design flaws and sloppy management, the Chinese government says.

Almost 200 people were injured in the crash near the south-eastern city of Wenzhou.

"Missteps" by 54 officials led to the disaster, the long-awaited official report says.

The crash led many Chinese to accuse the government of putting development and profit before safety.

It also triggered a wave of popular anger against officials who were accused of trying to cover up the seriousness, and causes, of the crash.

[snip]

The accident occurred after one train stalled following a lightning strike, and then a second high-speed train ran into it. Four carriages were thrown off a viaduct.

The report found that serious design flaws in control equipment and improper handling of the lightning strike led to the crash."

Or from the USA:

http://www.npr.org/2011/09/26/140703132/from-progress-to-problem-chinas-high-speed-trains, which includes this lovely quote:

"Developed countries have many years of experience operating these, so they can avoid risks. If this accident hadn't happened, we wouldn't have known the risks, right? It's just a small, small episode in our country's development."

Or from commie rag the Guardian:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jul/25/chinese-rail-crash-cover-up-claims

And various others.

Etc.

Or, if you prefer, trust everything they tell you about their advances in high technology.

But please don't expect others to share in your unshakeable faith in the nuclear industry.

It's already far too late for the nuclear industry to bring anything to the table for the coming crisis in the UK anyway.

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Trollface

When they are building to the same (give or take) design as will be built in the US and probably here as well, with oversight from the design team and inspections by the NRC (to see how they're getting on), then I don't see the Chinese CAP1000 as being a problem.

Only your unfounded hatred of the nuclear industry is blinding you to the fact that nuclear is needed and the AP1000 is the safest design yet. (Yup, flame bait. Heh!)

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Anonymous Coward

Flamebait noted and ignored. I'm not anti-nuclear as such, I have no problem with the technology, just with the cowboys currently (and historically) playing the game.

That "superior Western supervision" of which you speak, that's the kind of supervision that let Olkiluoto's low-cost subcontractors using inappropriately experienced staff build the reactor foundations (the containment?) with the wrong kind of concrete is it? And which had already seen relevant authorities (who hadn't done a nuclear project for decades) approve the plans in a year or so whereas the US NRC you mention would have wanted more like three years of assessment and discussion for what was effectively a world first?

Has the "superior Western supervision" discovered any other shortcomings at Olkiluoto, e.g. shortcomings which might have been introduced as a result of low cost procurement policies which are inevitable when projects like this are conducted by profit-goaled organisations? E.g. pipe welding defects?

In 2009 the Finnish regulators STUK sent contractors Areva (via the Finnish electricity supplier TVO) a "letter of protest" concerning the "defects and deficiencies in the design of the control and protection systems". Can anyone tell me whether Areva have responded yet or is the "superior Western supervision" letting the suppliers carry on regardless because fixing it is too costly?

I could go on, but what's the point.

Like I said, whether or not the underlying technology is dodgy, the commonly used business practices surely are.

http://www.stuk.fi/stuk/tiedotteet/2009/en_GB/news_550/ (control system design issues)

http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,655409,00.html (general article)

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Happy

So if the supervision was so bad, how are these problems being noticed?

Have you heard of the GDA process?

Ever looked at the HSE Nuclear website?

We (the UK) have one of the most rigorous inspection regimes in the world, because, instead of having to meet a standard to get a tick in the box, our regulators expect the manufacturers and operators to get the tick in the box and then justify why the tick is deserved. They then have to make the risk and consequence as low as reasonably practicable. A principle enshrined in the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Our nuclear regulators have the power to stop any and all operations at a nuclear site if the operations are not safe. A power they have threatened operators with on a few occasions (for an operating site, every day spent off-line means 1million in lost profit).

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Anonymous Coward

"So if the supervision was so bad, how are these problems being noticed?"

Expensively, and late, in general. But obviously it's better these problems are noticed before entry into service, or during service.

"Have you heard of the GDA process? Ever looked at the HSE Nuclear website?"

Yes, both, thank you, and I'm fully aware that the HSE has inherited the nuclear responsibilities of the late Nuclear Installations Inspectorate. I'm quite happy with the ALARP concept, less happy with the way it is often (in my personal experience) implemented in some industries (or not i.e. neglected). Same goes for some regulatory authorities (I've observed a few). Occasionally, there are some that are happy to analyse the detail, but frightened to admit there is an elephant in the room.

"Our nuclear regulators have the power to stop any and all operations at a nuclear site if the operations are not safe"

How often do they use it?

How often do contractors even bother with long-standing perfectly justifiable rules?

Somewhere on that HSE site used to be the long-standing pan-European regulatory policy to be considered before approving a proposal. I've read it (at least the pieces that relate to control+safety systems, which are my area of interest). I can't find my copy right now or remember the exact name (it's been a few years) but it is very very clear that at the time Olkiluoto was being built the rules for control systems required logically and physically separate systems for normal operation and for safety shutdown. Resilience by redundancy, same as you'd get on oil rig shut down systems, same as you'd get on critical aircraft systems, and lots of other places.

So what did Areva propose for Olkiluoto? An single fully integrated system in contradiction of the stated regulatory policy. Which is why the Finnish authorities got upset. And who can blame them.

So, what's being proposed for the UK? Single system? Independent dual-redundant systems? Does the difference matter?

The nuclear bit of the HSE had similar concerns to the Finns on the control and instrumentation system architecture, and also the lack of safety documentation on the subject. They were also concerned that the proposed system was based on Siemens S5 PLCs which are pretty much end of life.

Readers who care about stuff like this can read lots more (including the HSE's proposals to resolve these deficiencies), and perhaps draw their own conclusions as to why the contractors didn't address some very obvious stuff up front, at:

http://www.hse.gov.uk/newreactors/2011-gda-issues-epr.htm

Enjoy.

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Anonymous Coward

"Somewhere on that HSE site used to be the long-standing pan-European regulatory policy to be considered before approving a proposal."

The 2010 version of the bit that relates to software is called "Licensing of safety critical software for nuclear reactors Common position of seven European nuclear regulators and authorised technical support organisations"

and is at

http://www.hse.gov.uk/nuclear/software.pdf

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Coat

I for one...

... Welcome our nuclear overlords.

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Silver badge

I wonder what you will do in x years...

... when eventually you will run out of nuclear fuel?

Seriously, it will run out eventually. You can argue when that time will be, but it will be.

Anyhow, there is a solar and wind boom going on in Germany. A large part of the farmers and companies have photovoltaic panels up their roofs. It's fairly cheap and decentralized. If you would just stop bickering about it, and just start building it, you'll be able get get things done. Much of the rest can be done by building local diesel generators which use their excess heat to warm your house.

In a nutshell, every little bit helps. Of course the situation is much more difficult in the UK, as it's an island which isn't well connected to the grid.

And perhaps you could donate some Gigabytes of electricity:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzZXnNV4SoM

Germany apparently only needs 80 Gigabytes while we produce 140 Gigabytes.

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Silver badge

Run out?

Seriously?

If we use fissile materials in better reactor designs than the current ones or learn to extract uranium from the sea (expensive but fuel is such a small expense in nuclear generation that it's still neglibible) then we can make fissile fuel last for thousands of years. Probably a lot more.

That's without even thinking about fusion.

How long will the rare materials to make Solar PV last?

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Oh and...

...Gigabytes?

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Gigabytes

Glad it's not just me, I've been googling it to see if I've missed out on an measurement!

In the end I assumed it was related to the video he linked (no Youtube from work!) - "Donate Gigabytes of storage to help us work out how to keep saying no to feasible tech whilst we work out some way of generating power that'll actually work!"

Even then, I couldn't quite work out how donating storage would help. They either want to borrow some CPU Cycles (so could feasible ask for Ghz) or he means GigaWatts. Not sure I have any GigaWatts going spare though funnily enough (especially at 16p per Kwh)

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Have a look here: http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk/

It gives the current breakdown of the UK grid statistics.

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Silver badge

One take on the German situation

Well there is a reason why I, as a German, don't think we Germans should have nuclear power. Nuclear power requires the ability to make informed decisions on a grand scale just like having matches. If you don't have that ability, it becomes really dangerous. That's why you don't give matches to children.

Now the German government has proven that it cannot make informed decisions, by selecting the most unsuitable of the candidates for a final deposit. In fact they even put that candidate into the list after they already were busy evaluating the others. It can therefore not be trusted to make informed decisions which would be required to safely regulate nuclear power.

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Happy

Why dont they did out huge underground tanks the size of lakes and fill them with acid and great big lead plates like giant car batteries. Then put windmills everywhere to charge up the giant underground lead acid batteries.

Or they could put all the solar panels out at sea and then have reams and reams of copper cable or spiralling around so that the power would take 12 hours to travel down the cables to the consumption point so the mornings power would arrive on a 12 hour delay for at night when its needed.

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