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Joe Deely's picture
Partner Deely Group

Involved with high-tech for last 30 years. Interested in energy.

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  • Sep 14, 2020
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Perfect fit on this campus... would supplement the nearby wind resources as well as local solar.

Note: some coal is still burnt at the on-campus Abbott power plant.

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Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Sep 15, 2020

Would the completion of the reactor then mean the closure of that remaining coal? 

I'll be curious from a 'political' perspective how this plays out. The acceptance or rejection of the community to adding this reactor will be telling for other installations, especially in a university environment. 

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Sep 15, 2020

U of I consumes ~240GWh of electricity each year, so the reactor would only be capable of supplying 5% of the University's electricity needs.

It's a start. But the project will probably get some pushback on the use of steam for space heating. If it's anything like a traditional PWR it would use steam from the reactor's secondary loop. That's one loop (and one leak) away from exposing a lot of people to radioactive water.

Using nuclear steam to heat dormitories? I think there's a better testing environment.

Joe Deely's picture
Joe Deely on Sep 15, 2020

Bob  can you show your math on this?

U of I consumes ~240GWh of electricity each year, so the reactor would only be capable of supplying 5% of the University's electricity needs.

Wouldn't this reactor create 44 GWh/year or about 20% of total?

 

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Sep 16, 2020

Apparently there was an error in previous versions of the article. At the bottom:

"Editor’s note: A previous version of this article stated one micro-nuclear reactor is able to supply 43,000 megawatt-hours in electricity and 15 MWh of thermal power per year. However, one micro-nuclear reactor is able to supply 138,000 megawatt-hours of steam and 12,000 megawatt-hours of electricity. The Daily Illini regrets this error. "

Joe Deely's picture
Joe Deely on Sep 15, 2020

It looks like there is still about 20 GWh of coal generation... so yes potentially, the generation from this reactor could replace the coal generation.

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