The Chinese Mini-Manhattan Project MSR/LFTR Research and development Program was outlined at an ORNL Workshop this week. Unfortunately I was unable to attend, but I am going to plug in to a couple of my sources, to find out more about what was reported during the Workshop.
China is engaged in a highly ambitious project, while North American MSR Molten Salt Reactorr developers are focused on Uranium fuel cycle MSRs. This approach allows developers to use technology that was initially developed at ORNL in the 1950's and 1960's. This technology was tested by the ORNL Molten Salt Reactor experiment, which was highly successful. By using tested ORNL technology, and other tested nuclear technology, the current crop of North American MSR Thus developers plan to take a lower cost, shorter and quicker path to MSR commercialization. Thus while the Chinese employ 700 engineers on their MSR/LFTR project, Transatomic Power reports only two Nuclear Engineers on its staff. While the Chinese expect to have a commercial project by 2030, TAP plans to have a commercial MSR on the market by 2025. They will haqve to have more than two reactor engineers to accomplish this, of course, but R&D tasks are already being contracted out, and will continue to be.
China, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy, says it will deploy advanced nuclear reactors…