Saturday, September 14, 2013

Dr. Robert Hargraves, LFTR Advocate

I first encountered Dr. Robert Hargraves' nuclear advocacy 6 years ago, when I was looking for support for an idea that I was developing. The idea was a partial solution to nuclear costs through factory construction of reactors.  Robert had posted some material on the Internet advocating the same idea and I stumbled on it.  At this point the Pebble Bed Reactor was still in the running for reactor of the century and Robert had suggested that among its' advantages was its' potential for factory construction.

I respected Bob enough that I put the Pebble Bed Reactor in my also worth development list, at least partially because progress on its' development was being made by South Africa and China. Later Pebble Bed R and D in both countries was to peter out, and Robert joined the LFTR gang.  Robert quickly became one of the leading and most articulate LFTR advocates.  It is not by accident that Robert and I share many ideas.  I borrowed ideas from Robert and he may have borrowed a few ideas from me.  We both, of course, took ideas from Kirk Sorensen, David La Blanc  and also Rod Adams. 

Over the last few years Robert has been a literary partner with Ralph Moir, a nuclear fusion researcher and friend of the late Dr. Edward Teller, and a retired fusion technology researcher.  Robert and Ralph make a formidable team.

Robert has begun posting on The Energy Collective and much of what he has to say tracks Nuclear Green.  Here is an example of Robert's and Ralph's ideas:

The case for advanced nuclear power in twelve sentences:

Ho much do  my readers recognize?
1. Nuclear power plants generate power less expensively than wind or solar power plants.

2. Nuclear power plants are safer than other power plants.

3. There's plenty of uranium and thorium for civilization's foreseeable future.

4. People are overly fearful of radiation.

5. There's really not much waste; the US disposes of 1000 times more EPA-registered hazardous waste, like mercury, PCBs, etc. 
Robert and Ralph have also authored a three part Energy Collective post. The first part is titled Energy Cost Innovation, Part 1: Liquid Fuel Nuclear Reactors. It is followed by Energy Cost Innovation, Part 2. Finally a third part, Energy Cost Innovation, Part 3: Global Impact of Low-Cost Clean Energy,
concludes the series of posts.

This is a complex document which can be read by serious undergraduates who are not trained in science.  How many energy collective readers will take the time and devote the energy to read these documents? If they do, they will be rewarded for doing so.  I do not agree with every thing Hargraves and Moir have to say, but most of the time, they are spot on right.

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