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Canister design for deep borehole disposal of nuclear waste

Hoag, Christopher Ian
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 125 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.63%
The objective of this thesis was to design a canister for the disposal of spent nuclear fuel and other high-level waste in deep borehole repositories using currently available and proven oil, gas, and geothermal drilling technology. The canister is suitable for disposal of various waste forms, such as fuel assemblies and vitrified waste. The design addresses real and perceived hazards of transporting and placing high-level waste, in the form of spent reactor fuel, into a deep igneous rock environment with particular emphasis on thermal performance. The proposed boreholes are 3 to 5 km deep, in igneous rock such as granite. The rock must be in a geologically stable area from a volcanic and tectonic standpoint, and it should have low permeability, as shown in recent data taken from a Russian deep borehole. Although deep granite should remain dry, water in flooded boreholes is expected to be reducing, but potentially corrosive to steel. However, the granite and plug are the containment barrier, not the canister itself. The canisters use standard oil drilling casings. The inner diameter is 315.32mm in order to accommodate a PWR assembly with a width of 214mm. At five meters tall, each canister holds one PWR assembly. The canister thickness is 12.19mm...

Effective thermal conductivity measurements relevant to deep borehole nuclear waste disposal

Shaikh, Samina
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 107 leaves:
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.63%
The objective of this work was to measure the effective thermal conductivity of a number of materials (particle beds, and fluids) proposed for use in and around canisters for disposal of high level nuclear waste in deep boreholes. This information is required to insure that waste temperatures will not exceed tolerable limits. Such experimental verification is essential because analytical models and empirical correlations can not accurately predict effective thermal conductivities for complex configurations of poorly characterized media, such as beds of irregular particles of mixed sizes. The experimental apparatus consisted of a 2.54 cm. diameter cylindrical heater (heated length = 0.5 m) , surrounded by a 5.0 cm inner diameter steel tube. Six pairs of thermocouples were located axially on the inside of the heater sheath, and in grooves on the air-fan-cooled outer tube. Test media were used to fill the annular gap, and the temperature drop across the gap measured at several power levels covering the range of heat fluxes expected on a waste canister soon after emplacement. Values of effective thermal conductivity were measured for air, water; particle beds of sand, SiC, graphite and aluminum; and an air gap subdivided by a thin metal sleeve insert. Results are compared to literature values and analytical models for conduction...

Sensitivity of economic performance of the nuclear fuel cycle to simulation modeling assumptions

Bonnet, Nicéphore
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 130 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.64%
Comparing different nuclear fuel cycles and assessing their implications require a fuel cycle simulation model as complete and realistic as possible. In this thesis, methodological implications of modeling choices are discussed in connection with development of the MIT fuel cycle simulation code CAFCA. The CAFCA code is meant to find the recycling facilities deployment rate that minimizes the time by which spent fuel in storage today is used up in order to lead to a nuclear fuel cycle with minimum inventory of transuranic elements. The deployment is constrained by the recycling plants construction capacity and also by the economic requirement that the recycling plants loading factor never drops below a certain level. First, through a simplified fuel cycle model, it is analytically proven that an optimum solution is to build recycling plants at full speed up to a certain point in time b, then to suspend construction until interim storage gets completely depleted. The shape of the optimum solution, parameterized by b, is injected into an algorithm based on a complete model of the fuel cycle. An iterative process yields the value of b assuring depletion and satisfactory loading factors. Besides providing rigorous optimization,this analytical solution underpinning the CAFCA algorithm is expected to reduce considerably the vulnerability of the results to numerical discontinuities. Degradation of fuel quality with time in interim storage occurs due to the decay of Pu241 into Am241. While an obvious approach to track such effects is to couple the fuel cycle code with a neutronics/decay code (ORIGEN for example)...

Conceptual design of nuclear systems for hydrogen production

Hohnholt, Katherine J
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 81 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.63%
Demand for hydrogen in the transportation energy sector is expected to keep growing in the coming decades; in the short term for refining heavy oils and in the long term for powering fuel cells. However, hydrogen cannot be harvested from natural sources like other fuels, it must be industrially produced. In the United States, the vast majority of hydrogen is produced today by reforming methane, a carbon-based fuel. Due to environmental and fuel source concerns, non-carbon alternatives for producing hydrogen from water are being explored using different combinations of thermal, chemical, and electrical energy. This work explores some of the non-carbon alternatives, specifically using a nuclear reactor for providing heat and electricity for high temperature steam electrolysis and a hybrid electrolysis-chemical sulfur cycle. Also addressed is the sensitivity of production and efficiency of these cycles to process conditions. For a desired hydrogen distribution pressure of 3MPa, high system pressures increase the efficiency of high temperature steam electrolysis because of the decreased post-cycle compression energy requirements. High system pressures for the hybrid sulfur cycle, however, decrease the equilibrium thermal acid decomposition necessary to the process. High temperature steam electrolysis may also be used to provide variable hydrogen production when coupled with an electricity generation system. Increased hydrogen production decreases the efficiency of the electricity production...

An assessment of carbon sources for the production of synthetic fuels from nuclear hydrogen

Leung, MinWah
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 51 leaves
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.64%
In the transportation sector, the current dependence on petroleum to satisfy large transportation fuel demand in the US is unsustainable. Oil resources are finite, and causing heavy US reliance on oil imports. Therefore, the development of alternative transportation fuels that do not depend on oil is becoming increasingly necessary. Our research investigates the feasibility of producing gasoline synthetically from nuclear hydrogen and two carbon sources: carbon dioxide emissions and municipal solid waste. These synthetic fuels have the potential to satisfy the large demand for gasoline, while reducing CO2 emissions. The nuclear hydrogen is produced through High Temperature Steam Electrolysis (HTSE), with heat and electricity provided by a supercritical CO2 cooled gas fast reactor. Through this study, we determine the suitable components for gasoline production from CO2 emissions and MSW. The feasibility of these methods of gasoline production was assessed by performing material and energy balances for the involved processes, determining preliminary cost estimates, and evaluating production scale and environmental impact. The material balances were compatible with our gasoline production scheme. By-product oxygen from the HTSE was especially beneficial for both production schemes...

Design and construction of a cyclotron capable of accelerating protons to 2 MeV; Cyclotron design and construction

Dewan, Leslie
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 23 leaves
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.64%
This thesis describes the design and construction of a cyclotron capable of accelerating protons to 2 MeV. A cyclotron is a charged particle accelerator that uses a magnetic field to confine particles to a spiral flight path in a vacuum chamber. An applied electrical field accelerates these particles to high energies, typically on the order of mega-electron volts. This cyclotron can be used by students in the Department of Nuclear Engineering to perform experiments with low energy proton beams. For example, this cyclotron could be used for experiments involving the Li7(p,n)Be7 reaction, which requires protons with energies on the order of 2 MeV [2].; by Leslie Dewan.; Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Nuclear Science and Engineering, 2007.; Includes bibliographical references (leaf 21).

Human error contribution to nuclear materials-handling events

Sutton, Bradley (Bradley Jordan)
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 41 leaves
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.64%
This thesis analyzes a sample of 15 fuel-handling events from the past ten years at commercial nuclear reactors with significant human error contributions in order to detail the contribution of human error to fuel-handling activities, emphasizing how latent conditions can directly contribute to events. In particular, procedural inaccuracies often create conditions that lead to the development of errors related to maintenance work practices. This would be of significant concern for a pre-closure safety assessment for a geologic repository for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste, where many fuel-handling work activities would be performed. Specific emphasis is placed on fuel movement activities and control of ventilation systems, which could significantly impact worker and public health and safety in the case of a fuel-handling accident.; by Bradley Sutton.; Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Nuclear Science and Engineering, 2007.; Includes bibliographical references (leaves 40-41).

Hydrogen production using a supercritical CO₂-cooled fast reactor and steam electrolysis; Hydrogen production using a S-CO₂-cooled fast reactor and steam electrolysis

Memmott, Matthew J
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 215 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.65%
Rising natural gas prices and growing concern over CO₂ emissions have intensified interest in alternative methods for producing hydrogen. Nuclear energy can be used to produce hydrogen through thermochemical and/or electrochemical processes. This thesis investigates the feasibility of high temperature steam electrolysis (HTSE) coupled with an advanced gas-cooled fast reactor (GFR) utilizing supercritical carbon dioxide (S-CO₂) as the coolant. The reasons for selecting this particular reactor include fast reactor uranium resource utilization benefits, lower reactor outlet temperatures than helium-cooled reactors which ameliorate materials problems, and reduced power conversion system costs. High temperature steam electrolysis can be performed at conditions of 8500C and atmospheric pressure. However, compression of the hydrogen for pumping through pipes is unnecessary if electrolysis takes place at around 6 MPa. The reactor coolant at 6500C is used to heat the steam up to temperatures ranging between 2500C and 3500C, and the remaining heat is provided by thermal recuperation from product hydrogen and oxygen. Several different methods for integrating the hydrogen production HTSE plant with the GFR were investigated. The two most promising methods are discussed in more detail: extracting coolant from the power conversion system (PCS) turbine exhaust to boil water...

Analyzing the proliferation resistance of advanced nuclear fuel cycles : in search of an assessment methodology for use in fuel cycle simulations

Pierpoint, Lara Marie
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 126 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.67%
A methodology to assess proliferation resistance of advanced nuclear energy systems is investigated. The framework, based on Multi-Attribute Utility Theory (MAUT), is envisioned for use within early-stage fuel cycle simulations. Method assumptions and structure are explained, and reference technology cases are presented to test the model. Eleven metrics are presented to evaluate the proliferation resistance of once-through, COmbined Non-Fertile and Uranium (CONFU), Mixed-Oxide (MOX), and Advanced Burner Reactor (ABR) fuel cycles. The metrics are roughly categorized in three groups: material characteristics, material handling characteristics, and "inherent" facility characteristics. Each metric is associated with its own utility function, and is weighted according to the proliferation threat of interest. Results suggest that transportation steps are less proliferation-resistant than stationary facilities, and that the ABR fuel cycle employing reactors with low conversion ratios are particularly safe. Nearly all steps of the fuel cycles analyzed are more proliferation resistant to a terrorist threat than to a host nation threat (which has more resources to devote toward proliferation activities). The open light water reactor (LWR) and MOX cycles appear to be the most vulnerable of all cycles analyzed. CONFU proliferation resistance is similar to that of the ABR with conversion ratios 0.5 and 1.0; these are all approximately in between the values ascribed to LWR/MOX (at the low end) and ABR with conversion ratio zero (with the highest proliferation resistance). Preliminary studies were conducted to determine the sensitivity of the results to weighting function structure and values. Several different weighting functions were applied to the utility values calculated for the once-through and CONFU fuel cycles. The tests showed very little change in the ultimate trends and conclusions drawn from each fuel cycle calculation. These conclusions...

Power conversion system design for supercritical carbon dioxide cooled indirect cycle nuclear reactors

Gibbs, Jonathan Paul
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 207 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.64%
The supercritical carbon dioxide (S-CO₂) cycle is a promising advanced power conversion cycle which couples nicely to many Generation IV nuclear reactors. This work investigates the power conversion system design and proposes several "Third Generation" plant layouts for power ratings ranging between 20 and 1200 MWe for the recompression cycle. A 20 MWe simple cycle layout was also developed. The cycle designs are characterized by a dispersed component layout in which a single shaft turbomachinery train is coupled to parallel arrays of multiple printed circuit heat exchanger modules. This configuration has arrangement benefits in terms of modularity, inspectability, repairability and replaceability. Compared to the prior second generation dispersed layouts, its lower ductwork pressure drop confers approximately 2% higher thermal efficiency. Two alternative S-CO₂ cycle designs for medium power applications were developed using an in-house optimization computer code and Solid Edge software. The first design is a recompression cycle derived from the 300 MWe design developed at MIT for Generation IV reactors. The design employs one turbine, two compressors (main and recompression) working in parallel and two recuperators (high and low temperature) and maximizes cycle efficiency while striving for a small plant footprint. The second design is a simple S-CO₂ power cycle...

Coherent control of hyperfine-coupled electron and nuclear spins for quantum information processing

Yang, Jamie Chiaming
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 87 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.67%
Coupled electron-nuclear spins are promising physical systems for quantum information processing: By combining the long coherence times of the nuclear spins with the ability to initialize, control, and measure the electron spin state, the favorable properties of each spin species are utilized. This thesis discusses a procedure to initialize these nuclear spin qubits, and presents a vision of how these systems could be used as the fundamental processing unit of a quantum computer. The focus of this thesis is on control of a system in which a single electron spin is coupled to N nuclear spins via resolvable anisotropic hyperfine (AHF) interactions. High-fidelity universal control of this le-Nn system is possible using only excitations on a single electron spin transition. This electron spin actuator control is implemented by using optimal control theory to find the modulation sequences that generate the desired unitary operations. Decoherence and the challenge of making useful qubits from these systems are also discussed. Experimental evidence of control using an electron spin actuator was acquired with a custom-built pulsed electron spin resonance spectrometer. Complex modulation sequences found by the GRadient Ascent Pulse Engineering (GRAPE) algorithm were used to perform electron spin echo envelope modulation (ESEEM) experiments and simple preparation-quantum operation-readout experiments on an ensemble of 1e-1n systems. The data provided evidence that we can generate any unitary operation on an AHF-coupled 1e-1n system while sitting on a single transmitter frequency. The data also guided design of the next iteration of these experiments...

Viability of an expanded United States nuclear power program and its effects on energy markets

Khan, Tanzeer S
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 52 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.66%
The four biggest energy sources in the United States are coal, crude oil, natural gas, and nuclear power. While coal and nuclear power are produced domestically, more than 70% of crude oil and 20% of natural gas is imported. This places an unhealthy dependence on foreign products for our economy. Just as importantly, all of these energy sources, with the exception of nuclear power, produce large amounts of polluting emissions in the form of greenhouse gases which are responsible for environmental degradation. For these two reasons, we explore possible government policies to shift the US energy economy towards domestically-produced, environmentally-clean alternative energy sources, the most prevalent of which is nuclear power. Different forms of government support for investment in nuclear power is discussed, such as investment tax credits and production tax credits. As an instrument of public policy to affect energy imports and environmental impact, the possibility of a carbon tax (on the order of $150/tC) is considered. The effects of this carbon tax on the energy sector in the medium-term future (in the year 2020) are analyzed. Under the constraint of maintaining current natural gas demand the results show that there will be an increase in the use of nuclear power while lowering the dependence on crude oil and coal. To accomplish this...

An analysis of technical and policy drivers in Current U.S. nuclear weapons force structure

Baker, Amanda, S. B. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 47 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.65%
U.S. nuclear weapons force structure accounts for the number and types of strategic and nonstrategic weapon systems in various locations that comprise the nuclear arsenal. While exact numbers, locations, and detailed designs remain classified, motivations for the current and future of the nuclear arsenal is presented as a unique integration of logical technical and political information. The dynamic that results from military requirements, physical design limitations, and congressional response to balance deterrence with stockpile reductions has not produced the necessary level of change in the post-Cold War environment of the 21st century. As such, a stagnant position on nuclear weapons reductions diminishes the effect of U.S. global nonproliferation efforts.; by Amanda Baker.; Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Nuclear Science and Engineering, 2008.; Includes bibliographical references (p. 46-47).

Radiation exposure liability : the burden of responsibility and compensation in civilian and military nuclear ventures; Burden of responsibility and compensation in civilian and military nuclear ventures

Flores, Jessica (Jessica Alejandro)
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 53 leaves
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.66%
Since Enrico Fermi first discovered that neutrons could split atoms in 1934, peaceful and militaristic uses of nuclear energy have become prevalent in our society. Two case studies, Three Mile Island and the Nevada Test Site, allow for the examination of radiation injury liability in the context of existing radiation compensation systems. The Price-Anderson Nuclear Industries Indemnity Act, which governs civilian nuclear use, and the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act, which governs compensation for military nuclear weapons tests, are compared to determine the most efficient compensation system. Issues such as determining compensable diseases, establishing rigid criteria, and a heavy burden of proof define the efficiency of each system. A compensation system combining elements of the existing civilian and military compensation systems is proposed, which can be applied to future nuclear ventures such as the Yucca Mountain Repository.; by Jeccisa Flores.; Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Nuclear Science and Engineering, 2008.; "June 2008."; Includes bibliographical references (leaves 51-53).

India's nuclear power program : a study of India's unique approach to nuclear energy

Murray, Caitlin Lenore
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 57 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.67%
India is in the middle of the biggest expansion of nuclear power in its history, adding 20 GWe in the next 14 years in the form of pressure water reactors and fast breeder reactors. At the same time, the United States is overturning decades of policy in order to resume the export of nuclear materials to India, opening up the possibility of private investors in the Indian nuclear industry for the first time. This is a period of progress and turmoil in India's nuclear power program. This thesis seeks to describe and analyze India's nuclear prospects and to qualitatively assess the system's strengths and weaknesses. Using the inception of the country's nuclear power program as a starting point, this thesis will trace India's nuclear lineage to the present. In the process, it will evaluate what makes the Indian program unique, and why it may not be ideal for India that the United States is finally renewing its offers of a cooperative nuclear alliance.; by Caitlin Lenore Murray.; Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Nuclear Science and Engineering, 2006.; Includes bibliographical references (p. 53-57).

Fuel cycle options for optimized recycling of nuclear fuel

Aquien, Alexandre
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 200 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.68%
The accumulation of transuranic inventories in spent nuclear fuel depends on both deployment of advanced reactors that can be loaded with recycled transuranics (TRU), and on availability of the facilities that separate and reprocess spent fuel. Three recycling strategies are explored in this study: (1) Recycling in thermal Light 'Water Reactors (LWR) using CONFU technology (COmbined Non-Fertile and UO2 fuel), (2) recycling of TRU in fast cores of Actinide Burner Reactors (ABR), and (3) recycling of TRU with UO2 in self-sustaining Gas-cooled Fast Reactors (GFR). Choosing one fuel cycle strategy over the others involves trade-offs that need to be quantified. The CONFU, ABR, and GFR strategies differ from each other in terms of TRU loading in the reactor, net TRU incineration, capacities of recycling facilities needed, technology option availability, and flexibility. The CONFU and GFR are assumed to achieve zero net TRU incineration, while the ABR is a net consumer of TRU. The TRU loading is greatest in GFR and lowest in CONFU. While both CONFU and ABR require separation (of TRU from U) and reprocessing (recycling of TRUs from fertile-free fuel), the GFR is designed to, in equilibrium, recycle TRU+U after extraction of fission products only. It is assumed that thermal recycling is available in the short-term (2015)...

The potential for a nuclear renaissance : the development of nuclear power under climate change mitigation policies

Osouf, Nicolas
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 115 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.7%
Anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases are very likely to have already changed the Earth's climate, and will continue to change it for centuries if no action is taken. Nuclear power, a nearly carbon-free source of electricity, could contribute significantly to climate change mitigation by replacing conventional fossil-fueled electricity generation technologies. To examine the potential role of nuclear power, an advanced nuclear technology representing Generation III reactors is introduced into the Emissions Predictions and Policy Analysis economic model, which projects greenhouse gas and other air pollutant emissions as well as climate policy costs. The model is then used to study how the cost and availability of nuclear power affect the economy and the environment at the global scale. A literature review shows that estimates of nuclear power costs vary widely, because of differences in both calculation methods and cost parameters. Based on a sensitivity analysis, the most important parameters are the discount rate, the overnight cost, the capacity factor and the economic lifetime. The methodological differences affect not only the absolute power costs, but also the relative costs among electricity generation technologies.; (cont.) Acknowledging this uncertainty...

Integration of nuclear power with oil sands extraction projects in Canada

Finan, Ashley (Ashley E.)
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 197 leaves
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.67%
One of the largest oil reserves in the world is not in the Middle East or in Alaska, but in Canada. This fuel exists in the form of bitumen in Alberta's oil sands. While it takes a tremendous amount of energy to recover this bitumen and refine it into petroleum products, with oil prices nearing all time highs, it is profitable to do so. Oil sands recovery involves either strip mining the sands and extracting the oil, or pumping large quantities of steam into the ground in order to free the bitumen from the sand. Traditionally, the energy to produce the steam and hot water used in this process has come from natural gas. The use of natural gas for oil sands recovery presents a number of problems, among which are the environmental impact of the greenhouse gases and the price volatility of the natural gas market. This thesis explores the possibility of using nuclear energy to power oil sands recovery. Once operational, nuclear reactors produce no greenhouse gas emissions of carbon dioxide and offer relatively low and stable fuel and operation and maintenance costs. Uranium is not subject to the same market volatility as natural gas. There are, however, several trade-offs as well. This thesis compares the benefits and the drawbacks, and puts forth several complete scenarios for the introduction of nuclear technology into the oil sands recovery process. Nuclear energy used for steam production is found to be competitive with natural gas prices as low as $3.75/MMBtu (CAD).; (cont.) For electricity production...

Minimum carbon tax level needed to prompt a widespread shift to nuclear power

Thornton, Katherine C. (Katherine Claire)
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 50 leaves
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.66%
Carbon dioxide is suspected to be a major contributor to global warming. In the United States, nearly 70% of electricity is produced using coal or natural gas, both of which emit carbon dioxide into the environment. Nuclear power, which does not emit any carbon dioxide, produces 17% of the electricity consumed in the United States. In order to persuade utilities to switch from coal or natural gas to nuclear power and thus reduce carbon dioxide emissions, a carbon tax should be implemented. Depending on the cost of construction for new nuclear plants and the level of savings that will incentivize utilities to switch, the carbon tax needed to promote nuclear power will range between $20/tC and $200/tC. The full range of carbon tax scenarios are developed in this thesis, with the most likely carbon tax being $1 10/tC. This cost assumes a $1800/kw capital construction cost and a 10% risk perception premium on the bus bar cost of power to address the financial and industry community's somewhat negative perception of nuclear investments. From a policy perspective, this carbon tax will be more effective in causing utilities to move to nuclear power than a cap and trade policy. From a utility standpoint, switching to nuclear power under a carbon tax is less expensive than implementing a program of carbon capture and sequestration.; by Katherine C. Thornton.; Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology...

The perception of risk : a summary of studies and how they pertain to the future of nuclear energy; Summary of studies and how they pertain to the future of nuclear energy

Waits, Christopher Russell
Fonte: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Publicador: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 58 p.
ENG
Relevância na Pesquisa
135.67%
One of the most interesting aspects of nuclear power is the perceived risk that the public infers from its existence. This paper explores the public's response to risk in general and specifically to nuclear power by reviewing behavioral studies examining how risk is perceived. The paper also discusses important themes relevant to nuclear power and risk perception, including trust, stigma, the difference between experts and the public, and ways of informing and educating the public. The current political status of nuclear power is discussed by examining the roles and opinions of three groups dealing with nuclear energy: 1) the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 2) the nuclear energy industry, and 3) experts in the field of nuclear power and environmentalists who are concerned with the subject. Finally, conclusions are drawn based on the research into the public's perception of risk and the current status of nuclear energy in order to develop suggestions that may aide in the development of nuclear technology and a resurgence of nuclear power, while addressing the public's concerns and furthering the public's understanding of nuclear technology.; by Christopher Russell Waits.; Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Nuclear Science and Engineering...