Tuesday, April 29, 2008

More on Decentralized Nuclear Power

Toshiba continues to push forward with the NRC on getting the 4S nuclear reactor design through the approval process.

For those of you following along with John Robb's Resilient Community work over at GlobalGuerrillas, such a system would be ideal for the MicroGrid concept - a plug-and-play power source that lasts for decades, requiring a small staff and little maintenance to the reactor system. No long outages. The fuel economy of these sodium-cooled designs is proven. No waste worries as Toshiba will take the entire core out and send it back to Japan for reprocessing.

This, in my opinion, will be a big deal after we move through what I expect will be an ugly transition period over the next 4-6 years. As we shape the kinds of communities that will thrive in the coming New World, power systems like the 4S (and other small nuclear systems) will have the potential to play a key role in keeping the lights on, keeping the computers computing and giving an edge to the communities that benefit from it.

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