Make Fuel from Water and Carbon Dioxide (Let's Add Nuke)

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darturtle
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Make Fuel from Water and Carbon Dioxide (Let's Add Nuke)

This German company claims converting carbon dioxide and water (hydrogen) into liquid fuel. Its website: http://www.sunfire.de

My background is chemical engineering. This is possible. During World War I, been blockaded by UK, German developed chemical process to make dynamite effectively from air and water (Nitrogen, Hydrogen, Oxygen).

To separate hydrogen and oxygen from water, you need lots of energy. Usually, people use electrolysis. With so much energy been used to get liquid fuel, it is not economic feasible. However, if people use nuclear energy, this energy issue goes away.

While confronting peak oil ideologists, while I mentioned NUKE, frequently makes them angry because scientifically makes their argument not withstand, at least in some nations such as China who has no problem to build (building now) more nuke power plants, which don't generate smokes which choke many there. Frequently, those people argue a nuclear power plant uses more energy to decommission than it produce during its short life. This might be true if a nuke plant runs by US extremists. In those phonically incorrect nations, they just replace old reactors with new ones without shutting down the site and clean it.

Also, recent technology developments made nuclear fuels can be re-generate and re-use (such as use Pu239, even some methods for U235) therefore reduce the requirements of mining new ones. Also, Thorium appears be a much safer fuel than Uranium.

Use nuclear energy to reform carbon/hydrogen into liquid fuel is appalling to some. If some nations go this route, what shall we do?

Never mind the 5 so called "declared nuclear powers" - according to international laws written by them (USA, Russia, China, UK, and France), they are free to make bombs therefore, it is perfect OK ("legally") to use nuclear waste from their power plants to make bombs.

Sorry to write this way. My point is that let's think realistically, even if it doesn't match our ideology.

 

 

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darturtle
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US Nuclear Submarine

US nuclear powered submarine can stay in deep water for a long time but conventional diesel powered ones cannot, why?

People need to breathe and engine needs oxygen to run. A diesel powered submarine can only carry limited amount of compressed air therefore they need to go to surface frequently to replenish airs.

A nuclear submarine has no this problem. A nuclear reactor is used to generate electricity to power the ship. This power is used to electrolysis water to get oxygen and to desalinate water to get drinking water. As long as it has food, it can stay under water very long.

The most danger part is in a war. If a nuclear submarine is hit by enemy, there is no guarantee its nuclear reactor will not be damaged and radio active waste will be released into open sea. It seems that Americans believe that this will never happen despite Russia and China also have nuclear powered submarines.  Of course, the best way to prevent this is PEACE.

 

 

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Thetallestmanonearth
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The day we figure out a way

The day we figure out a way to permanently, economically deal with nuclear waste in a way that protects the entire biosphere for the full radio-active-half-life of the waste is the day I start to consider nuclear a viable option.  Currently I see it as the single biggest mistake of humanity and liability of the entire planet.  How are we going to keep all 400+ of those reactors cool in a liquid fuel starved world?

The novel Stars Reach by John Michael Greer talks about a future three or four centuries from now when the majority of people are infertile and those who aren't are given much privilege for reproducing.  Huge parts of the post industrial landscape are uninhabitable and poisoned due to vaguely understood technologies from the past still haunting them. I worry that his fictional prophesy may be overly optimistic.  The last thing we need to be doing now is adding to the problem.

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darturtle
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Russia Offers a Service ...

If anyone buys a nuclear power plant from Russia, it can ship all nuclear waste from this plant to Russia. To the nation, no more nuclear waste. How will then Russia treat it?

How China treat its nuclear waste?

Anyone care about American environmentalists thinking?

Don't think that they will just dump those waste in desert or Arctic region. They care their lands. The just do them in a sensible way.

Forget not, just like USA, Russia and China digs underground tunnel to test nuclear bombs. They know how to treat waste in a scientific way, not care to break American extremists' heart.

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cmartenson
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Unintended consequences
Thetallestmanonearth wrote:

(...)  Huge parts of the post industrial landscape are uninhabitable and poisoned due to vaguely understood technologies from the past still haunting them. I worry that his fictional prophesy may be overly optimistic.  The last thing we need to be doing now is adding to the problem.

The thing is, humans ingenuity has outpaced our knowledge.  Yes we can create things with technology, usually by using a reductionist, iterative approach, but we lack the ability to think naturally either with respect to exponentials or in terms of complex systems.

For example, something as simple as plastic.  I nice industrial product.  Great for many uses.  Also with dozens of (still) poorly understood impacts on ecosystems, bioaccumulation of adsorbed toxins, reproductive effects, and the like.

It's a plastic world - English from It's a plastic world on Vimeo.

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darturtle
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It's Not Just Nuke but Ways of

Summarize my humble views:

1. Don't think others thinking like you

2. Communists tried to force others to adopt communism, they FAILED; so will Americans who believe everyone else has to behave like them

3. Not how you think but how to go ahead of trend; sell an investment if there is no future; buy one if there is potential while everyone else reject it.

4. There is no perfect things on earth; everything involves trade off so does nuke - for some cases, it is suitable but not others

 

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Thetallestmanonearth
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If anyone buys a nuclear

If anyone buys a nuclear power plant from Russia, it can ship all nuclear waste from this plant to Russia. To the nation, no more nuclear waste. How will then Russia treat it?

National boarders cannot contain nuclear radiation.    Nuclear energy is not and cannot be safe until there is a way to manage all of the waste for as long as it is dangerous. Storing it in above ground tanks is foolish. As we see at the Hanford site these tanks start leaking before the end of their expected lives.  Even now with waste leaking we can't find anyone who will take them. This isn't an American problem or a Japanese problem (Fukishima?) this is a global problem.

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Boomer41
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Beware the Fear of Nukes

No doubt about it. Nuclear waste from conventional (uranium) reactors is a major problem. Not to mention the enormous hazard of meltdown. But running away screaming from the word 'nuclear' is not the answer. In the coming fuel shortage solar and wind will definitely not be capable of furnishing the energy needs of the planet - so we desperately need another source, especially of portable energy to power vehicles.

As daturtle suggests, the most probable answer lies with nuclear power. However, nukes of the future need not be the dangerous polluting beasts they are at present. The liquid flouride thorium reactor (LFTR) provides a possible solution.

Invented at Oak Ridge in the 1940s a prototype LFTR ran very successfully, but was shut down and discarded because it did not produce plutonium for bombs. What it did do however was demonstrate that safe abundant nuclear power is a possibility. Not only that but a LFTR can reprocess waste from uranium reactors into its own fuel. http://www.peakprosperity.com/podcast/85431/kirk-sorensen-detailed-explo...

Dismissing nukes out of hand is a dangerous policy. Safe nukes are possible. What we need is a serious effort here in the US (the Chinese and the French are already on it) to develop the LFTR into a safe, powerful source of clean energy for the future.

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darturtle
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Thorium

In May this year, news report that China has accelerated its Thorium nuclear energy program. It spends quite a lot resource on Thorium based nuclear energy which is safer and cheaper. Personally, I like Thorium based nuclear energy. US built one power plant but no more because it didn't generate nuclear waste which can extract Pu239 to make bombs.

As Western world abandons nuke energy (only keep bombs), it cannot force others to do the same.

darturtle's picture
darturtle
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Best Time to Prepare Winter Is in Fall

We know that there are plenty of oil for decades to use but:

1. Many are not cheap (tar sand, shale, deep sea ... are expensive)

2. Many politically corrected energy source (solar, wind, ...) are not practical to supply large amount; not to mention, current solar cell is NOT environment friendly as rare earth metals used in it are highly toxic

3. Every energy source has its pro and con; it is an engineering problem to choose

4. If you don't prepare during time of plenty, in Winter, you have to pay whatever price others ask, if you cannot pay, you suffer

5. USA is NOT a big beneficiery of cheap oil since it is a producer, worse, an expensive producer (espeically on shale oil/gas)

6. Japan and China benefit a lot with low oil price as they import a lot

7. It is demand collapse which drives down oil price, not conspiracy. Just check BDI, why BDI goes down together with oil price? if not less economic activities triggers less shipping thus less oil demand? I talk globally, not just USA

8. Most other commodities - copper, iron ole prices also go down

9. Past researches already prove that it is feasible to convert carbon, hydrogen into fuel; of course, you need lots of energy and further developments are required

10. It is best to complete those studies while oil price is low

To those who firmly believe that nuke means evil, I have nothing to say (talking to make nuke safer is useless to them). It is global, not just USA. If others don't think as Americans, especially those have weapons make US dare not attack, espcially those are economically stronger than US which doesn't rely on US to survive, ... ...

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