Lowering threats in sustainable development using nuclear energy
AHWR300-LEU Lowering threats in sustainable development using nuclear energy Anil Kakodkar
Per capita el. consumption kWh (HDI) Goa 2263 (0.792) HDI unaffected by change in electricity use Bihar 122 (0.542) All India 779HDI strongly (0.605)dependent onelectricityuse
World OECD World-OECDPopulation(billions) 6.7 1.18 5.52AnnualElectricityGeneration 18.8 10.6 8.2(trillion kWh)Carbon-di-oxideEmission 30 13 17(billion tons/yr)Annualav. per capita ~2800 ~9000 ~1500Electricity (kWh)Additional annual electricity generation needed just to reach5000kWh average per-capita electricity (necessary for a reasonablestandard of living) in non-OECD countries would amount to ~20trillion kWh that is roughly equal to present total generation.
THE CRUCIAL ENERGY CHALLENGEWorld electricity supply would need to nearlydouble (around 3000 GWe additional electricgeneration capacity) just to support a reasonablestandard of living for allTimely ability to cater to this need in asustainable manner(or at least reserve equitableresources for the purpose) is in my view aprerequisite for long term peace and stabilityOn the other hand the threat of climate changerequires reduction in use of fossil energyClearly business as usual approach will not doand nuclear energy has to play much greater role
A much Experience has IS THERE ENOUGH URANIUM ? talked about view shown that investment in Cumulative uranium low proj-3.4 million tons exploration is driven by demand by 2050 middle proj-5.4 million tons demand and (Analysis of uranium supply high proj-7.6 million tons prices. No to 2050-IAEA publication) shortage is foreseen Jan2009 estimate of uranium at 6.3 million tons (includes U up to $ 260/Kg). Should last a 100 years at 2008 consumption rate Cases with use of 5.469 million tonne natural uranium metal (Identified resources)* in LWR (OT) and LWR-MOX 8000 IAEA INPRO GAINS High target (both Pu-U and Pu-Th) Cumulative capacity (OT) *:Total resources (Identified + Undiscovered) are 15.969 7000 Cumulative capacity (LWR-LWR (Pu-U MOX)) million tonnes Cumulative capacity (LWR-LWR(Pu-Th MOX)) Ref: Uranium 2007: Resources, Production andInstalled Capacity (GWe) 6000 Demand-The joint report by OECD Nuclear Energy 5000 Agency and the International Atomic Energy Agency Demand profile as per (RED Book 2008) 4000 IAEA INPRO GAINS (High) Uranium in open cycle is unsustainable By adding undiscovered if nuclear energy is to meet a 3000 uranium resources, this reasonable fraction of carbon free point merely shifts to 2050 electricity requirements. 2000 1000 Recycle of nuclear fuel in breeder reactors has to be brought in soon 0 enough 1980 2000 2020 2040 2060 2080 2100 Year 5
Recycle of nuclear fuel is also necessary to resolve the issue of permanent disposal of spent fuel There is already a large used uranium fuel inventory (~270,000 tons as per WNA estimate). Its permanent disposal has remained an unresolved issue which in my view is unlikely to be resolved. While the spent fuel would be a sufficiently large energy resource if recycled, its permanent disposal ( if resorted to ) is in my view an unacceptable security and safety risk (plutonium mine?) We need to adopt ways to liquidate the spent fuel inventory through recycle While direct disposal of spent fuel is a long term risk, universal adoption of recycle is not likely to gain ground on account of nuclear security concerns
Risk Nuclear Security Climate Change #Diversion of nuclear materials for # Difficult to predict global weapons purposes – Could cause consequences – Could well be much threat any where larger that what can be caused by WMDs #Threat to nuclear facility can cause public trauma– Threat primarily in # Development deficit and varying the neighborhood of the facility energy security challengesMinimisation of risk to humanity would necessitate rapid growth ofnuclear power.Security measures alone, though necessary, are unlikely to besufficient. Sovereignty of nations, varying degree of security deficit,responsible behaviour & trust deficit, managing non-state actors etc.are likely to remain difficult challenges.Technology measures that provide inherent proliferation resistanceand security strength must be quickly brought in to replace fossilenergy.
Thorium, a one stop solution to safety, sustainability and proliferation resistance Options for plutonium disposition 80 – Uranium-based fuel: Neutron Initial fuel absorption in 238U generates additional plutonium.Fissile plutonium content 60 in the fuel (kg/te) – Inert matrix fuel (non-fertile metal 40 alloys containing Pu): Degraded reactor kinetics - only a part of the 20 core can be loaded with such a Discharge fuel fuel, reducing the plutonium 0 0 20 40 60 80 100 disposition rate. Discharge burnup (GWd/te) – Thorium: Enables more effective Plutonium destruction in thorium- utilisation of Pu, added initially, plutonium fuel in PHWR while maintaining acceptable performance characteristics.
Detectability of 233U (contaminated with 232U) for all the cases, is unquestionable 16 6000 6000 1000 233 U 14 Exposure U 5000 5000 12 time for U 232 332 4000 232 U 10 4000 lethal dose 100 3000 8 3000 6 2000 2000 10 4 1000 2 1000 0 0 no t art nec n32c U 0 1 f D 0a 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 gk 4 8 r o m1 t 5 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 ) MHf o gk/ g( m p n no t art nec n32c U 3om p n no t art nec n32c U eri uqc a o )r h( e m er us opx E L Burnup GWd/te Burnup GWd/te 2o 2o i . it i i Case of Pu-RG+Thoria in AHWR p i p i t
The Indian Advanced Heavy Water Reactor (AHWR), a quicker proliferation resistant solution for the energy hungry worldAHWR is a 300 MWe vertical pressure tube type, boiling light water cooled and heavy water moderatedreactor (An innovative configuration that can provide low risk nuclear energy using availabletechnologies) Major design objectives Significant fraction of Energy from Thorium Top Tie Plate Displacer Water Rod Several passive features Tube 3 days grace period Fuel Pin No radiological impact AHWR can be configured to accept a Passive shutdown system to range of fuel types address insider threat scenarios. including LEU, U- Pu , Th-Pu , LEU-Th Design life of 100 years. and 233U-Th in full Bottom Tie Plate core Easily replaceable coolant channels. AHWR Fuel assembly
AHWR 300-LEU is a simple 300 MWe system fuelledwith LEU-Thorium fuel, has advanced passive safety features, high degree of operator forgivingcharacteristics, no adverse impact in public domain, high proliferation resistance and inherent security strength. Peak clad temperature hardly rises even in the extreme condition of complete station blackout and failure of primary and secondary systems. Reactor Block ComponentsAHWR300-LEU provides a robust design againstexternal as well as internal threats, including insidermalevolent acts. This feature contributes to strongsecurity of the reactor through implementation oftechnological solutions.
Presence of 232U in uranium from spent fuel The 232 U 233 U composition 234 U 235 U of the fresh (LEU 236 U in Thorium) 238 U as well as the MODERN AHWR300-LEU spent fuel of LWR U 0.02 % AHWR300-LEU 232 U 0.00 % 232 233 U 0.00 % 233 U 6.51 % makes the 234 U 0.00 % 234 U 1.24 % fuel cycle 235 U 0.82 % 235 U 1.62 % 236 U 0.59 % 236 U 3.27 % inherently 238 U 98.59 % 238 U 87.35 % proliferationUranium in the spent fuel contains about 8% fissile isotopes, resistant.and hence is suitable to be reused in other reactors. Further, itis also possible to reuse the Plutonium from spent fuel in fastreactors.
Reduced Plutonium generation High 238Pu fraction and low fissile content of Plutonium 238 Pu 239 Pu 240 Pu 241 Pu 242 Pu MODERN AHWR300-LEU LWR 238 Pu 3.50 % 238 Pu 9.54 % 239 Pu 51.87 % 239 Pu 41.65 % 240 Pu 23.81 % 240 Pu 21.14 % 241 Pu 12.91 % 241 Pu 13.96 % 242 Pu 7.91 % 242 Pu 13.70 % The French N4 PWR is considered as representative of a modern LWR.. The reactor has been referred from “Accelerator-driven Systems (ADS) and Fast Reactor (FR) in Advanced Nuclear Fuel Cycles”, OECD (2002) STRONGER PROLIFERATION RESISTANCE WITH AHWR 300-LEU MUCH LOWER PLUTONIUM PRODUCTION Much Higher 238Pu & Lower Fissile Plutonium
AHWR300-LEU provides a better utilisation of natural uranium, as a result of a significant fraction of the energy is extracted by fission of 233U, converted in-situ from the thorium fertile host. With high burn up possible today,LEU-Thorium fuel can lead to better/comparable utilisation of mined Uranium
Thorium thus offers the potentialfor a wider deployment of nuclearpower with reduced threats ( bothnuclear as well as those relatedto climate change )
“IAEA is not concerned with the tenth or thethousandth nuclear device of a country. IAEA is onlyconcened with the first.- And that will certainly not be based on a thorium fuel cycle” - ---------Bruno -Bruno Pellaud, Former Deputy Director General,IAEA 16
While greater geographical spread of nuclearenergy with minimised risk can be realised byThorium-LEU fuel, there would still be aquestion of meeting energy needs beyondwhat can be supported by thermal reactorsFast breeder reactors would thus benecessary for growth in nuclear powercapacity beyond thermal reactor potentialFast reactors as well as uranium fuelenrichment and recycle would however needto be kept within a more “responsible”domain
Present deployment MO Thorium X Of nuclear power Reprocess Thermal Spent Fuel Fast Enrichment reactors Reactor Uranium LEU Plant For growth in nuclear LEU Thorium Recycle Thorium generation fuel beyond thermal reactor potential U 233 Thorium LEU- Nuclear power with Thorium greater proliferation resistance Safe & Thorium Secure Reactors Reactors For ex. AHWR Recycle For ex. Acc. Driven MSR Thorium