miércoles, 9 de octubre de 2013

Problemas para 65 de los 100 reactores nucleares Estadounidenses por falta de combustible

Noticias industria

Según informa el New York Times, 65 de los 100 reactores nucleares Estadounidenses pueden tener problemas para el suministro de electricidad debido a la reducción del suministro del material que se produce en China y Rusia....

Report Says a Shortage of Nuclear Ingredient LoomsBy Published: October 8, 2013
WASHINGTON — Most nuclear reactors in the United States rely on a type of lithium that is produced only by China and Russia, and the supply may be drying up, according to a study to be released on Wednesday.
The Government Accountability Office said the looming shortage of a material critical to the operation of 65 out of 100 American nuclear reactors “places their ability to continue to provide electricity at some risk,” a conclusion echoed by outside experts. The problem reflects the withering away of the American industrial infrastructure of all things nuclear, and the nation’s dependence on distant places for “energy-critical materials,” including “rare earth” materials used in high-efficiency motors, and other materials used in solar cells. Producing these generally involves environmentally damaging processes, one reason that production has moved abroad.
The material in potentially short supply is specifically lithium-7, which is what is left over when it is separated from another form, lithium-6, which can be used to make tritium, the hydrogen in the hydrogen bomb. The two forms, called isotopes, are chemically identical, although lithium-7 has one additional neutron.
The equipment needed to separate lithium-6 from lithium-7 is mostly a cold war leftover. The United States shut down almost all of its machinery in 1963, when it had a huge surplus, now mostly consumed. It has not had to make much tritium in the last few years because its nuclear weapons inventory is shrinking.
China and Russia apparently still have their equipment in place, but because it is related to their weapons program, outsiders do not know how much capacity they might have. At the same time, Chinese domestic demand for lithium-7 is likely to increase soon because they are working on a new type of nuclear reactor that uses vastly larger quantities of the material, according to independent experts.

... el artículo completo en nytimes.com

... la energía, factor estratégico fundamental. 

3 comentarios:

  1. Y esto a que se debe ? a que EEUU no tiene yacimientos de Uranio que seguir explotando, o es que hace tiempo paró la producción de este elemento para su uso en reactores comerciales ?

  2. Hola

    Lo tienes en la noticia citada, se debe a que EEUU desmanteló su maquinaria dedicada a esas tareas en 1963, según reza en la información del New York Times.

    O sea, depende de China y de la Federación Rusa, dos amigos de toda la vída para EEUU.

  3. no soy experto en centrales nucleares pero :

    tengo algunas dudas , por lo que entiendo el litio se ocupa para almacenar energia (baterias) , los materiales de tierras raras que son neodimio-fierro-boro se ocupan para crean imanes , que se utilizan en motores.
    no veo relacion con el uranio - plutonio , etc que segun entiendo son el combustible de las centrales nucleares.