To review, nuclear power plants built in the 1970’s used 40 metric tons of steel, and 190 cubic meters of concrete, for each megawatt of average capacity. For comparison, modern wind energy systems, with good wind conditions, take 460 metric tons of steel and 870 cubic meters of concrete per megawatt. Modern central-station coal plants take 98 metric tons of steel 160 and cubic meters of concrete—almost double the material needed to build nuclear power plants. This is due to the massive size of coal plant boilers and pollution control equipment. Conversely, natural gas combined cycle plants take 3.3 metric tons of steel and 27 cubic meters of concrete—explaining why natural gas is such an attractive fuel, if it is cheap. But what about new nuclear construction? Here are some of the results of our U.C. Berkeley study. [SLIDE 5] The nuclear power plants that we built in the 1970’s were very efficient in their use of steel and concrete. In response to the Three Mile Island accident, however, “bloat” occurred in the designs of new, evolutionary reactors, with steel and concrete inputs increasing by 25 to 50 percent. This is the case for the ABWR, first built in Japan in the 1990’s, and for the EPR, the new European plant design which be built in Finland.However don't forget the concrete used in storage.
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
Britain and the Nuclear.
Britain is going Nuclear I see. I guess this is going to bring the debate back up again. Some have like Peter Nolan already started. Anyway I put my views here before. On the matter of tons of concrete a Nuclear waste dump in the Former East Germany is being contracted with 4 million tons of concrete. However here is an interesting quote from a Californian report.