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IndianOil and Nuclear Power Corporation sign JV agreement for setting up nuclear power plants

Indian Oil Corporation Ltd., India’s flagship national oil company, and Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd. (NPCIL) recently entered into a joint venture agreement for setting up nuclear power plants across the country.

IndianOil’s businesses span the entire hydrocarbon value chain—from refining, pipeline transportation and marketing of petroleum products to exploration & production of crude oil and gas, marketing of natural gas, and petrochemicals. It is also pushing into renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, bio-fuels, and hydrogen. IndianOil has recently bagged a project in a competitive bidding to set up a 5.5 MW solar power project at Barmer, Rajasthan. These efforts at low-carbon energy will now be augmented by nuclear energy, the company said.

Nuclear power is the fourth-largest source of electricity in India after thermal, hydro and renewable sources of electricity. India’s nuclear power industry is undergoing rapid expansion with plans to increase nuclear power output to 63,000 MW by 2032.

NPCIL, a wholly-owned enterprise of the Government of India under the Department of Atomic Energy, and its subsidiaries under the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) are the only agencies authorized for setting up nuclear power plants in India. Presently, NPCIL operates 20 nuclear reactors with a total installed capacity of 4,780 MW and six reactors with 4,800 MW capacity are under construction.



This is a common sense decision for India. Like China it will need more e-power in the coming years and nuclear is one way to do it. USA could also re-activate its nuclear program with 100+ new plants.

Henry Gibson

When India made an atomic bomb, Canada stopped supplying it with nuclear technology. CANDU reactors designed in Canada but built with a high percentage of local labour and materials were built very quickly in China recently. The US should order at least one for every state and three or more for Hawaii so that coal and crude oil can be diverted to the production of jet fuel or diesel.

With the oil profits that Canada gets from the US, it should build CANDU reactors along the US border to get even more electrical profits. Much electricity from the Columbia river water of Canada goes directly to Los Angeles after being generated in Oregon and Washington.

The tar sands area of Canada should already have several CANDU reactors installed to provide heat for extraction and electricity for Los Angeles over high Voltage Direct Current Transmission lines. Two such lines already exist to supply LA. along with several High Voltage A.C. lines.

India is now the largest producer of heavy water after Canada destroyed its factory by the taxes of privatization, but the CANDU reactors use less uranium for producing the same amount of energy that a US reactor would, and; in fact, CANDU reactors can get additional energy out of used US nuclear fuel without any chemical reprocessing if desired. Or special reactors could be built to reuse the used fuel bundles directly. China is now testing the use of its waste uranium fuels in its CANDU reactors.

India has much thorium, and the theoretical and experimental studies indicate that thorium heavy water reactors may be able to just barely produce their own fuel from thorium once started with uranium or the wasted plutonium isotope mixture from uranium reactors mixed with about 99% thorium. Starting new thorium reactors is a very good use of any plutonium that needs to be eliminated. Every pound of it can produce more heat than two million pounds of coal. The fuel for CANDU reactors can actually be delivered by a bicycle delivery boy with a very few trips a day.

INDIA should also immediately start producing all of its liquid fuels from it own coal but make provisions for importing coal from Australia if necessary. There is no reason to lose large amounts of money due to crude oil speculators.

With the advent of power semiconductors, cheap long distance electrical transmission is possible with buried cable and is being done. Even with its low conductivity and high weight, Insulated cheap steel conductors can be buried in the ground for possible lower cost cables if copper, aluminum, magnesium or sodium are too expensive. Insulated sodium buried cables from another high priced copper era may still be in service in some places.

Electric power can be used for almost any process that requires heat and the speculation in the price of crude oil has forced the price of all other energy higher including uranium, but the price of Uranium is only a small part of the price of nuclear electricity at the meter and even at $2000 a pound it would not double the price at the meter because reuse of spent fuel would become economical much before then. Running the uranium now in storage that has had half of its U235 removed, the so called "depleted uranium", though the modern centrifuges could remove another half of the remaining U235 at a fraction of the cost of using new uranium at high speculative prices.

India and France and Japan and China should build modern centrifuges so that they can use at very low prices all of the depleted Uranium now in storage in the US. Or the US can do it because it shut down all of its Uranium mines and processing plants when the price was 8 dollars a pound and has used Uranium from Russian bombs since then. There is also the spare plutonium to be used that can be used in combination with depleted uranium for the reactors near Phoenix Arizona and perhaps some others.

This plutonium fuel can be immediately and permanently excluded from using in ordinary nuclear bombs by mixing it with five to fifty percent of the reactor plutonium isotope mix extracted by the French from used nuclear fuel. Or the US could extract such plutonium from its own used fuel and eliminate the need to store the used fuel for tens of thousands of years.

Nuclear energy can be used to reduce the cost of refining crude oil and changing coal into liquid fuels. High temperature reactors can even produce hydrogen for fuel from water by chemical means, but present nuclear power can produce hydrogen by electrolysis at far high cost but at lower cost than high price crude oil.

ZEBRA batteries charged with electric power from nuclear power plants are more efficient and cost effective than making hydrogen fuel for use in automobiles. GE is going the be making its DURATHON version of the batteries, which reduce energy use in locomotives and mining trucks.

Sodium Sulfur batteries are also good at storing nuclear produced electricity. And the ones now being made by NGK should be tested for operating electric locomotives over stretches of non electrified rail lines of less than a hundred miles. These could be useful in India.

Nuclear power plants as well a nuclear reactors built for the production of hot water for heating and cooling large cities are the clearest and most easily implemented ways of reducing CO2 release by the human race. They also provide low cost energy for industry in any amount so that many jobs are created and they do this in any location. Water is useful for nuclear power stations but they can work without much water if necessary. If built near the sea they can also provide cheap drinking water from salt water, or the electricity can produce drinking water by reverse osmosis thousands of miles away.

Because of the many regulations imposed upon nuclear power plants and the large size and cost the price is much higher than necessary so they must be supported by government loans or even ownership and operation, but the end result is affordable energy for all uses and users. ..HG..

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