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Re: [cdn-nucl-l] Swedes deliver nuclear power to the people
This post says:
The CLAB facility must process 220 tonnes of fuel a
I am wondering what the
density of these "220 tonnes" is: how many kilograms per cubic
meter? If this was water, with a density of 1 gm per cc, we would
arrive at 220,000,000 cc (if I haven't slipped a decimal point), or, at
100 * 100 * 100 = 1,000,000 cc per cu meter, 220 cubic meters of
"waste", which is a cube a hair over 6 meters a side, or roughly 19ft
per side, for us hairy-eared Americans. Assuming a density of 18.7 gm/cc
(density of Uranium, Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, 39th Edition), or a
relative density of 18.7, the volume of the waste would be roughly 11.8 cu
meters, or a cube 2.3 meters a side. Obviously the "truth" lies
somewhere between these two extremes.
However: whether it is 11.8 cubic meters or 220 cubic meters: this
volume of waste is obviously minor compared to the volume of material moved to
obtain the fuel in the first place. It is absolutely trivial compared to the
volume of coal which would have to be mined in order to supply an equivalent
amount of energy. I strongly suspect that it is also trivial compared to
the clinker produced by burning that much coal.
I have noticed a tendency on the part of the Press
to throw large numbers around; thus making problems seem intractable.
Reminds me of the sign I had on my radio in college, to keep the cleaning lady
from tuning to her favorite religious revival station while cleaning the
"suite" I occupied with 2 other room-mates: it was a 3x5 card with a 1
kilohm resistor attached, reading Warning!!! 1,000.000,000 ohm
resistor!!! The number of zeros was impressive - scared the panties
off of her (she reported me to the dorm monitor (a physics grad student), who
split a gut laughing and told her very sternly NOT TO TOUCH
In this case, a little comparison of the volume of
"waste" to the volume of the average single-family house would have
been useful, I think.