Thursday, June 20, 2013

Nuclear aging: Not so graceful | Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

The abandonment of aging nuclear reactors—most prominently reactors that need repairs, as is the case at San Onofre in California and Crystal River in Florida, but also at some plants that have simply become uneconomic to operate, like Kewaunee in Wisconsin—has huge implications for resource-acquisition decisions. As the US nuclear fleet ages and the “nuclear renaissance” ballyhooed over the last decade fades into history, having failed to deliver on its promises, these early retirements will be closely scrutinized in regard to decisions about both old and new reactors. The industry is likely to seize on these retirements as justification to get behind the next new nuclear technology, but the lesson they actually teach is quite the opposite. Aging reactors that are too expensive to fix and must be retired before reaching the end of their expected life spans may be not a relic of the past, but an indication of the future. At one time, the nuclear plants now being closed were seen as the future of the electricity-generating industry. They teach a lesson for how the economics of new designs should be evaluated...

more > Nuclear aging: Not so graceful | Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

No comments:

Post a Comment