The thorium fuel cycle is a nuclear fuel cycle that uses an isotope of thorium, 232Th , as the fertile material. In the reactor, 232Th is transmuted into the fissile artificial uranium isotope 233U which is the nuclear fuel. Unlike natural uranium, natural thorium contains only trace amounts of fissile material (such as 231Th), which are insufficient to initiate a nuclear chain reaction. Additional fissile material or another neutron source is necessary to initiate the fuel cycle. In a thorium-fuelled reactor, 232Th absorbs neutrons to produce 233U. This parallels the process in uranium breeder reactors whereby fertile 238U absorbs neutrons to form fissile 239Pu: most toxic reaction on earth. Depending on the design of the reactor and fuel cycle, the generated 233U either fissions in situ or is chemically separated from the used nuclear fuel and formed into new nuclear fuel.
1 231Th+4n0 ->233U+2e- (2p++2e- ->2n0)
Thorium cells produce 233U – idea to make a dirty bomb: terrorists will love it! So every Thorium fuel needs insurance of 2 billion. So a neutron and electron source does the trick.
There is a better way – a steam plasma tube. Which is 160 times more energetic, and totally non toxic – so of no interest to terrorists. Well done physics – you have just showed terrorists how to make a dirty bomb: put sales restriction of neutron emitters and nuclear kit – like centrifuges.
Not going to say why!
A steam plasma at 4 atmospheres produces 1.2MW, from 2x10-17cc of regular water a year.
We pump air over the steam plasma tube, and through an automotive thermoelectric generator. This produces speed linked AC from the DC current we make. Advances means we get over 200kW of power. Only 45kW will drive a helicopter – so we fly between cities – as in 'Back to the Future'.
Thinking on 238U sustains a chain reaction 233U will only produce heat – no bomb. Sorry terrorists, a thorium cell will only produce the toxic material inside a dirty bomb – it will not explode. Still need the 2 billion of insurance PER THORIUM FUEL CELL.
4 xH++e- ->(1+x)n0 x usually=1
5 16O++4n0 ->8H++7e-
6 xH++(>2)n0+PL->Ex3+L+X-ray hence '2'
So a 50x1cm steam plasma tube produces 1.2MW. Whereas a hyper-toxic uranium fission tube only 250kW: and a thorium fuel cell of the same size 125kW, with a neutron emitter.
We convert a miniscule volume of regular water, into massive heat, light and X-rays: no solid waste. A thermoelectric generator will produce over 200kW of power – so we only need a 25cm steam plasma.
Which uses so little regular water, we never fill up. No Carbon Dioxide – C 0 transport.
Thorium requires massive insurance – making the process uneconomic. Uranium fission needs insurance of 100 billion. Thorium fission 50 billion. There is no insurance above 1 billion available.
A steam plasma tube can be stopped with a tap from an electric hammer. And is useless to terrorists. No insurance is required.