Nuclear powered cars.

RichInSpirit

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Supposedly nuclear power is meant to be very green from a CO2 point of view at least, so why not skip all this fuss and bother about lithium ion batteries, range anxiety, charging etc.
Just stick miniaturised nuclear reactors in cars for unlimited range. No refuelling or recharging.
 

Purple

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Supposedly nuclear power is meant to be very green from a CO2 point of view at least, so why not skip all this fuss and bother about lithium ion batteries, range anxiety, charging etc.
Just stick miniaturised nuclear reactors in cars for unlimited range. No refuelling or recharging.
They already have nuclear power cars in other countries, just as we have turf power cars here.
 

EmmDee

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Supposedly nuclear power is meant to be very green from a CO2 point of view at least, so why not skip all this fuss and bother about lithium ion batteries, range anxiety, charging etc.
Just stick miniaturised nuclear reactors in cars for unlimited range. No refuelling or recharging.
Back to steam power? Except now, as well as having to top up with water all the time we have the added complication of storing expended nuclear fuel. I'd imagine they'd be quite heavy when you consider the lead cladding needed.
 

Itchy

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Nuke my ride? Well at least the gamma rays will be better than the deep state 5G smart meter fallout that's coming. Better the devil you know and all that. Wake up sheeple!
 

Zenith63

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A RTG would probably be a better bet than a nuclear reactor, much smaller and no need to create steam then convert that to electricity, you just go directly from heat to electricity. The Voyager spacecrafts each had three RTGs (weighing in at less than 120kg) which have been producing electricity since they launched in the 70s. They're not too efficient though, less than 10% of the energy gets converted to useable electricity, while a petrol car converts maybe 20-30% to the wheels, an electric 60%ish.

50 years between refills though? Bring it on!
 

MrEarl

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I fear for the future of Tesla, once Sellafield starts rolling out cars ;)

Personally, I don't like the risk that comes with Nuclear power, small as that risk may be.
 

Purple

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I fear for the future of Tesla, once Sellafield starts rolling out cars ;)

Personally, I don't like the risk that comes with Nuclear power, small as that risk may be.
It's the only viable form of green energy. The impact of coal powered electricity generation on the environment is the equivalent of a Chernobyl sized event every 4 years.
 

Purple

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Maybe we’re being a little hasty in dismissing this idea. NuScale received safety certification for their ‘reactor in a can’ today - https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/09/first-modular-nuclear-reactor-design-certified-in-the-us/

If you’re happy driving a car with a cement mixer truck size cylinder on the roof then this is probably a runner.
When it comes to Nuclear reactors I'm a fan of the Travelling Wave Reactor design as it is intrinsically safe and can use existing nuclear waste as fuel. Using that technology there is enough existing waste to power the world for a thousand years. The waste in the USA alone would generate $100 trillion worth of electricity. From an energy generation revolution point of view it is close to Nuclear Fusion in how big a step it would represent.
 

Zenith63

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When it comes to Nuclear reactors I'm a fan of the Travelling Wave Reactor design as it is intrinsically safe and can use existing nuclear waste as fuel. Using that technology there is enough existing waste to power the world for a thousand years. The waste in the USA alone would generate $100 trillion worth of electricity. From an energy generation revolution point of view it is close to Nuclear Fusion in how big a step it would represent.
Bill Gate's supported Terrapower seem to be working on a TWR reactor, but they also had an announcement this week that they've been given go ahead to develop one of their reactor designs (not TWR), not sure what that means for their TWR plans...


Lots happening in nuclear at the moment, maybe Ireland having a smaller nuclear station or two is not as unrealistic as it once seemed, which would be fantastic!
 

Purple

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Bill Gate's supported Terrapower seem to be working on a TWR reactor, but they also had an announcement this week that they've been given go ahead to develop one of their reactor designs (not TWR), not sure what that means for their TWR plans...


Lots happening in nuclear at the moment, maybe Ireland having a smaller nuclear station or two is not as unrealistic as it once seemed, which would be fantastic!
They were ready to build a TWR in China but Trump's trade war scuppered their plans.

The newest reactor in the USA was commissioned in 1978 and was designed in the 1950's. Most reactors in operation today were designed with pencils and slide-rules.
Imagine how unsafe air travel would be if we were still using 1950's technology.
 

Zenith63

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For trucks/trains maybe, but for passenger cars hydrogen is a dead duck. It’s slow to pressurise for refills, dangerous/difficult&expensive to store, is mostly made from oil releasing large quantities of GHGs in the process, cannot refill at home like an electric car. Mostly importantly though, car manufacturers are in the process of spending billions to develop their electric car production lines, putting many close to bankruptcy, there’s not a chance they’re decide to repeat that for hydrogen when electrics are going from strength to strength, the incentives to do so are zilch.

I’d give nuclear power cars and hydrogen powered cars about the same odds of mass adoption:p
 

Zenith63

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Yes sorry, filling the car doesn't take long. The challenge is that refilling needs to take place at up to 15000PSI (yes you should be concerned about the number of zeros in that figure of an incredibly flammable substance being pumped by Joe Public), which takes quite a bit of time to build each time a car refills. So a 5 minute car fill sounds great, but if the pump isn't useable for 30/60/90 minutes (I cannot find the number at the moment sorry) the throughput of the station will be badly affected.

But as I say all these issues with hydrogen are kinda secondary to the pure economics of getting hydrogen cars built at scale, Toyota were the only ones taking it seriously but even they recently accounced they've started working on battery electric vehicles. I just don't see the likes of VW/GM/PSA/BMW deciding to throw the kind of money at it that would be required (VW reckon they'll spend $30bn developing their BEVs), where's the incentive, they don't sell hydrogen/petrol/diesel...
 

losttheplot

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It seems hydrogen cars have been almost here for the last 20 years. The cars won't sell if there's no infrastructure and no one will build the infrastructure without demand. This would mean huge incentives to encourage the infrastructure.
With BEVs, home charging means you're not totally reliant on the public chargers.
 

losttheplot

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The future could be a combination of hybrids, full EVs and maybe hydrogen for HGVs and buses.
If everyone suddenly switched to EVs, yes the grid wouldn't take it.
 

Purple

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The future could be a combination of hybrids, full EVs and maybe hydrogen for HGVs and buses.
If everyone suddenly switched to EVs, yes the grid wouldn't take it.
It'll be a 20 year transition to EV's with cleaner electricity generation. It won't make a big difference to the problem of climate change though.
 
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