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Technology Rolls-Royce Pitches Nuclear Reactors as Key to Clean Jet Fuel

18:55  06 december  2019
18:55  06 december  2019 Source:   bloomberg.com

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Rolls - Royce Holdings Plc is touting nuclear reactors as the most effective way of powering the production of carbon-neutral synthetic aviation fuel without draining global electricity grids. Drawing on technology developed for nuclear -powered submarines, the small modular reactors or SMRs could

Rolls - Royce Pitches Nuclear Reactors as Key to Clean Jet Fue Greta Thunberg’s ‘Flight Shame’ Is Fueling a Carbon Offset Boom.

(Bloomberg) -- Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc is touting nuclear reactors as the most effective way of powering the production of carbon-neutral synthetic aviation fuel without draining global electricity grids.

Drawing on technology developed for nuclear-powered submarines, the small modular reactors or SMRs could be located at individual plants to generate the large amounts of electricity needed to secure the hydrogen used in the process, according to Chief Executive Officer Warren East.

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The Rolls - Royce pressurised water reactor (PWR) series has powered British nuclear submarines since the Valiant class, commissioned in 1966.

Synthetics and biofuels are likely to become the mainstay of aviation in coming decades, East said, providing liquid propellants for the next generation of aero-engines before the advent of all-electric alternatives. Reactors that could power the hydrogen extraction are small enough to be transported by truck and would occupy a building one-10th the size of a nuclear power station.

An SMR attached to a synthetic fuel plant would “provide a very competitive solution,” East said in a briefing at the Aviation Club in London. Electricity costs would be 30% lower than for a large nuclear facility, matching wind power, with the modular approach allowing parts to be made on a factory production line.

So-called electrofuels are synthesized using carbon dioxide or carbon monoxide captured from sources such as cement production, together with hydrogen derived from water via electrolysis, itself powered by sustainable electricity sources such as wind, solar or nuclear. In the future, direct carbon capture from the atmosphere could sever any link with fossil sources.

Iran, Russia launch new phase of nuclear power reactor construction

  Iran, Russia launch new phase of nuclear power reactor construction Tehran and Moscow inaugurated on Sunday a new phase of construction for a second reactor at Iran's sole nuclear power plant in Bushehr on the Gulf coast. Ali Akbar Salehi, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), and deputy chief of Russia's nuclear agency Rosatom, Alexander Lokshin, launched the new stage at a ceremony where concrete was poured for the reactor base.

A nuclear reactor or nuclear power plant consists of nuclear reactor fuel , control rods, moderators, pressure vessels, coolant and containment. Most nuclear electricity is generated using just two kinds of reactors which were developed in the 1950s and improved since.

One pellet of Nuclear Fuel weighing 0.3 grams (less than the weight of a quarter) is equivalent to roughly 1 ton of coal, 150 gallons of oil, and 17,000 cubic feet of natural gas (Thank you NEI.org for the statistics). To give you a concept of the amount of energy a reactor has, consider this.

London-based Rolls-Royce, Europe’s biggest maker of jetliner engines, would partner with a petrochemical specialist or alternative-energy startup to develop the technology, East said.

The proposals face significant obstacles, including widespread public concern about radiation leaks and the safe disposal of nuclear waste, as well as question marks over U.K. plans to revive the sector after Hitachi Ltd. and Toshiba Corp. withdrew from major projects.

Read More: A $39 Billion Wind Company Bets Hydrogen Is Key to Climate Goals

To contact the reporter on this story: Christopher Jasper in London at cjasper@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net, Andrew Noël, John Bowker

For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

The Navy's Patent for a Compact Nuclear Fusion Reactor Is Wild .
The designs seemingly stretch the limits of science. Scientists have longed to create the perfect energy source. Ideally, that source would eventually replace greenhouse gas-spewing fossil fuels, power cars, boats, and planes, and send spacecraft to remote parts of the universe. So far, nuclear fusion energy has seemed like the most likely option to help us reach those goals. The big problem? It’s difficult to harness, and we’re nowhere near producing it at the scales we need in order to cause a seismic shift in energy policy.

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