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Following Hamas' atrocities in Israel, the media are awash with commentary, so I will keep my comments short. I am shocked by the willin...

Sunday 10 December 2023

Here comes the micro nuclear reactor!

Right in time for COP28 we have new information on the development of 'micro-nuclear reactors'. This is not a totally new development, and indeed these reactors are not available today. Nevertheless, the recent article  (see Rolls Royce plans '120-inch-long' mini nuclear reactor for Moon outpost) sheds some light on the ongoing development of these very compact reactors. Measuring some 1.2m by 3 m they can generate 1-5 Megawatts of energy. This is much lower than the oft-discussed SMR generating 500-1000 MW.  

The reactors are being developed by Rolls-Royce who indicate they will be available in 2030. The development was driven largely by the need to provide power in space. Where they could provide long-term power in a small footprint in a hostile environment, eg the dark side of the moon. Of course once developed they are likely to be used more widely. Given they are portable they would suit remote environments. 

Given nuclear technology has now been accepted as 'Green', all types of nuclear technologies are likely to receive keen support. And not a minute too soon.

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