Bill’s Letter to New York Times

On Sunday February 19, 2017 the NYT published two stories that were weirdly related. One was on the death of the U.S. Nuclear Power industry, and the other was on the death of Mexico City due to lack of drinking water and their horrible dysfunction with wastewater management.  We wrote this letter to the editor […]

The problem is the fuel cycle

This short paper argues that the real problem with nuclear power is that the dominant fuel cycle based on low enriched uranium 235/238 is the source of most of our problems with nuclear proliferation.  If we switch from the Uranium/Plutonium fuel cycle to the Thorium/Uranium cycle, which for all practical purposes produces no weapons materials, […]

South Platte Distillation Concept

Download conceptual report on the use of thermal distillation to produce potable water on the South Platte. South Platte River Water Reuse Project 20170219

Molten Salt Reactors for Jordan?

The Kingdom of Jordan could be the first country in the world to obtain all of its water and power from advanced molten salt reactors.  There is an acute shortage of both water and power in the Kingdom to support the current population of over 9.5 million persons.  If the Jordan Atomic Energy Commission were […]

MSR’s 101

Here is a good article that explains what a molten salt reactor is (MSR), and how these devices could lead to a revival of nuclear power for production of both electricity and distilled water.  The waste heat from every MW of electrical energy output can typically be used to generate 0.1 million gallons per day […]

Come for the Thorium; stay for the reactor.

So, said Dr. David LeBlanc of Terrestrial Energy, www.terrestrialenergy.com. His point was that the key to advanced reactors is not so much the fuel they use (Thorium or Uranium), but their configuration as a liquid fuel, molten salt reactor. The use of molten salt obtains most of the advantages of safety, economy and simplicity of […]

The Republic of Science

The great Alvin Weinberg made the point that what he called the “Republic of Science” “can be destroyed more surely by withdrawal of public support for science than by intrusion of the public into its workings.” This is true, but for the public to have a constructive role in the debate it needs to be […]

Why water engineers should be interested in nuclear power.

Providing water to a large population of urban customers, with plenty available for irrigation of parks and gardens, is not possible without a large and reliable source of inexpensive energy.  The current trends in the U.S. are for elimination of coal and oil power plants, heavy reliance on natural gas, and decommissioning of the existing […]

How Much South Platte Water is Leaving Colorado?

Roughly speaking it looks like more than 800,000 AF of water may be leaving the state on an annual basis after the depletions due to irrigating the lands between the State Line and Greely are accounted for.  A large amount of this water might be used to supply the Front Range with high quality drinking […]

Letter to LA Times on Water/Energy

Los Angeles is searching for new water.  The waste heat from just 7 of their power plants could supply the entire demand. Letter to LA Times on Thermal Desalination