[ RadSafe ] Graphite SWAG Answer - Helium on tubine?

JGinniver at aol.com JGinniver at aol.com
Sat Nov 12 13:23:27 CST 2005

In a message dated 12/11/2005 18:34:08 GMT Standard Time,  hflong at pacbell.net 

Penner  said he expects metallurgy to enable direct turbine rotation by 
superheated  helium
in a few years.

the following link 
_http://web.mit.edu/pebble-bed/papers1_files/PBReactors.pdf_ (http://web.mit.edu/pebble-bed/papers1_files/PBReactors.pdf)  is  to a 
paper produced by MIT that describes the current state of development of  the 
Pebble Bed reactor around the world.  It states that ESKOM  in  South Africa is 
currently developing a direct cycle gas turbine which will use  the helium gas 
circulating through the core to generate electricity without any  intermediate 
heat transfer steps. You might also want to check out the IAEA  KNowledge base 
on HTGR technology at _http://www.iaea.org/inis/aws/htgr/index.html_ 
It may also be worth remembering that the core still uses slightly enriched  
uranium, and that this can still be reprocessed to extract plutonium.  As  far 
as I know the best hope for a fuel cycle that can't be used to produce  
nuclear weapons is the Thorium to Uranium-233 fuel cycle.  I believe that  it was 
only India that has worked on this option in recent years.

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