Hyperion estimates that the whole thing will cost from $2000 to $3000 per watt, a cost that would be competitive with windmills. Unlike windmills the Hyperion will produce power very reliably and will have a capacity factor of 1 until it runs out of fuel, which will take from 5 to 15 years. At 15 years the Hyperion would be approaching the natural lifespan of wind generators. The Hyperion would produce up to 5 times the electricity that five 5MW windmills would produce during a 15 year run, and the Hyperion need not sit at the end of a long high voltage transmission line. It is safe enough to sit down the street from your house, although having the security guards come over to borrow sugar for their tea all of the time might prove a headache. After the Hyperion runs out of fuel, the Hyperion company will dig it up and ship it back to the factory to be refurbished and refueled.
Making the Hyperion plan work will require a lot of capitol, and there is a risk. Much of the Hyperion plan can be adapted for LFTR. LFTRs could be designed to be as small as the Hyperion, but LFTR cores, and other major parts are truck transportable in much larger size. In fact a 400 MWe LFTR can be truck transported in several sections. Like the Hyperion, the LFTR is quite simple, in fact the LFTR is simpler. Indeed the manufacturing cost of a 400 MWe LFTR might not be higher than the manufacturing cost of a 25MWe Hyperion. Unlike the Hyperion, the LFTR would not create a long term toxic residue, and it could be refueled during its operations. Refueling the LFTR would cost less than refueling a Hyperion, because it fueling involves the use of ultra cheap thorium, rather than relatively expensive highly enriched Uranium. The LFTr would be more proliferation proof, would cost less to build, and less to own, It would last for at least 30 years, If the Hyperion costs from $2000 to $3000 per kW (in the fine print it says "over night price" and that does not make the Hyperion such a great bargain), the LFTR might well cost half that price. And with an anticipated lifespan, the LFTR would produce several times the amount of electricity a Hyperion would produce during its lifespan. Like the Hyperion the LFTR core could be buried and thus would not require an expensive housing. Thus LFTR owners would receive several times the revenue the Hyperion owner would, with similar costs for a much higher generation capacity and longer lifespan. In short the Hyperion would not last long on the market if a LFTR showed up as competition.
Update: I commented on Dan's post,
Like Martin Luther King, Hyperion has seen the promised land, but they may not get there. Los Alamos never was a great reactor design shop, and the viewpoint that if it fizzled as an atomic bomb, it must make a great reactor may not be the brightest idea around.