New approach to Nuclear Power Plants

Discussion in 'Physics' started by Wendy, Apr 20, 2009.

  1. Wendy

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    Mar 24, 2008
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  2. KenK

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    Mar 30, 2009
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    Interesting... Is a "fluorescer" another name for scintillator, or is there a fundamental difference?

    It looks like it uses radioisotopes and not reactors, so I'm guessing it's only suited for applications where we currently use RTGs (radioisotope thermoelectric generators). Which mostly means spacecraft. (Though I think the Soviets used them in lighthouses too.)
     
  3. Wendy

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    Fluorescent, as in how a white LED or a fluorescent light works. Why limit it to such a small scale? Nuclear reactions produce a lot of radiation, a lot of it high energy photons. Convert the photons to something we can use.

    There are other reactor configurations that haven't been used, but are probably pretty viable, such as pebble bed reactors. These reactors heat water, but are incapable of thermally running away, unlike conventional reactors.
     
  4. jpanhalt

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    Jan 18, 2008
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    The word, scintillation has a lot of common uses, such as scintillating performance.

    As for the production of light per se, fluorescence is usually applied to the emission of light from a singlet molecule after excitation with light. Scintillation is light emission after excitation with ionizing radiation. I have excluded chemiluminescence, bioluminescence, phosphorescence and other ways to produce light (e.g., sonoluminescence, triboluminescence) for simplicity.

    Although the distinction may be arbitrary with respect to the end product of light, the distinction between ionizing radiation and light as the source of excitation is useful for communication.

    I found the original article a bit vague on the aspect of fluorescence vs. scintillation. I certainly respect the University of Missouri, my wife went there, but my initial impression was that there was a little puffery going on.

    John
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2009
  5. Wendy

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    That is a problem with all these articles, the fluff factor. I thing they were referring to the XRays and other photonic radiation emitted by the pile.
     
  6. ethan007

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    May 11, 2009
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    Thats an wonderful idea and thinking man
     
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