Jim Conca

ANEEL: A Game Changing Nuclear Fuel

Jim Conca

A new nuclear fuel made from both uranium and thorium, especially when used in CANDU/PHWRs, can address several issues with nuclear power – proliferation, waste and cost. Plus it’s made-in-America makes it a prime candidate for export to emerging markets.

Nature Dying By A Thousand Cuts

Jim Conca

The wild places of the world are disappearing, and will continue to disappear, until they are no more. And it’s all about habitat – we keep taking it away from everything else. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Green Tech /green-tech Business energy

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Managers Of $40 Trillion Make Plans To Decarbonize The World

Jim Conca

The IIGCC is a European group of global pension funds and investment managers, totaling over 1,200 members in 16 countries, who control more than $40 trillion in assets (€33 trillion). They have drawn up a plan to cut carbon in their portfolios to net-zero and hope other investors will join them.

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China Has ‘First-Strike’ Capability To Melt U.S. Power Grid With Electromagnetic Pulse Weapon

Jim Conca

China now has a network of satellites, high-speed missiles, and super-EMP weapons that could melt down our electric grid, fry critical communications, and even takeout the ability of our aircraft carrier groups to respond. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Aerospace & Defense /aerospace-defense Business energy

What Will A Biden-Harris Administration Do For Nuclear Energy?

Jim Conca

Joe Biden has a $2 trillion climate plan that includes nuclear power, particularly development of small modular reactors. His VP choice, Kamala Harris, will likely endorse his plan, which is good if democrats want the plan to succeed at all. Just look at last week’s rolling blackouts in California.

Preliminary Data Suggests Low-Dose Radiation May Be Successful Treatment For Severe Covid-19

Jim Conca

Human medical trials have begun on severely ill COVID-19 patients using low-doses of radiation. The first results on a very small group at Emory University Hospital were published this week and the results were quite extraordinary. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Healthcare /healthcare Business energy

Artificial Intelligence Platform Detects Power Grid Flaws And Wildfire Dangers Better And Faster Than Humans

Jim Conca

Powerlines and equipment problems have been the cause of most recent wildfires. But a new AI and machine vision technology can analyze millions of images of powerlines and towers to find dangerous faults and flaws to help utilities identify problem areas and repair them before a fire starts. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation AI /ai Business energy

Japan’s Expert Panel Agrees That Dumping Radioactive Water Into The Ocean Is Best

Jim Conca

An expert panel is recommending that the Japanese government allow Tokyo Electric Power Company to release radioactive water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear plants into the ocean. And that’s a good thing to do since a gallon of this water is as radioactive as a family-sized bag of potato chips

Climate Change Driving Forests To Smaller And Younger Trees

Jim Conca

A new study by scientists at PNNL shows that ongoing environmental changes are transforming forests worldwide, resulting in shorter and younger trees with broad impacts on global ecosystems. Stunted growth from rising temperatures more than offset any growth gains by increased CO2 fertilization.

Engineering Solutions May Work Better On Coronavirus Than Social Ones

Jim Conca

Americans are not good at following rules. Better to engineer our society so contaminated air isn’t allowed to flow between people. Just like water-borne epidemics were stopped over the last hundred years by building clean water and sewer systems. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Healthcare /healthcare Business energy

American Sailors Lawsuit Against Japanese Over Fukushima Radiation Rejected By U.S. Appeals Court

Jim Conca

The 9th U.S. Circuit rejected an appeal by U.S. service members seeking damages from TEPCO and GE for damages from alleged radiation exposure following the Fukushima disaster while they were onboard the carrier USS Ronald Reagan in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami. This was the correct result.

The Scientists Taking Atomic-Level Pictures Of The Coronavirus

Jim Conca

The coronavirus packs an outer armament of 27 proteins, each one having a unique and complex 3D structure that can be targeted by scientists to stop the virus.But we have to image them correctly and that’s where PNNL’s Garry Buchko comes in with his nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy

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Debunking Fears Of Nuclear Waste At California’s San Onofre Reactor

Jim Conca

During a virtual meeting held by Southern California Edison's Community Engagement Panel, experts considered a number of Doomsday Scenarios that could threaten the nuclear waste stored at the shuttered San Onofre nuclear power plant. But things got weird with fear of things like short-range missiles. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Science /science Editors' Pick editors-pick Business energy

Nuclear Power Does Slow Climate Change

Jim Conca

Why are we trying to close nuclear plants that have been relicensed as safe for another 20 yrs? To save a penny to spend on renewables and say that helps climate change? As all climate scientists agree, prematurely closing nuclear plants is bad for the climate. And it doesn’t save any money at all

Washington State Intends To Be The Clean Energy State And Nuclear Is Key

Jim Conca

A new study of energy needs in the Pacific Northwest concluded that more diverse, low-carbon electricity sources are needed to maintain energy reliability and achieve a carbon-free system by 2045. And some of that has to be nuclear

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America’s Nuclear Navy Still The Masters Of Nuclear Power

Jim Conca

America’s Nuclear Navy is one of the oldest and largest nuclear organizations in the world, and has the world’s best safety record of any industry of any kind. There are over a hundred nuclear reactors, which are actually small modular reactors, that power 86 submarines and aircraft carriers

Carbon Engineering - Taking CO2 Right Out Of The Air To Make Gasoline

Jim Conca

Extracting CO2 from air is the best way to reverse global warming without resorting to expensive technologies, convoluted tax schemes or preventing billions from getting sufficient energy. If you then make gasoline from it, then you’d kill two birds with one stone. That stone is Carbon Engineering

Atomic Weapons Testing While Troops Looked On – Did It Increase Their Cancer Risks?

Jim Conca

A new study reports on 114,270 nuclear weapons test participants that were followed for up to 65 years. Contrary to decades of anecdotal reports, the study concluded that there were no statistically significant occurrence of cancers or adverse health effects from radiation among these soldiers. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Science /science Business energy

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It's Really OK If Japan Dumps Radioactive Fukushima Water Into The Ocean

Jim Conca

Slowly releasing Fukushima tritium-contaminated water into the Pacific Ocean is a very good idea. No other radioactive elements are in the water and tritium just isn’t very radioactive - it self-dilutes in water really quickly, even in our bodies, making it impossible to harm anyone or anything

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Nuclear Steps Up Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Jim Conca

As COVID-19 spreads, thenuclear field is stepping upwith a unique diagnostic technique calledRT-PCR, whichhelps detect and identify this coronavirus accurately within hours in humans, as well as animals that can host it.It can tell us a lot about exposure and transmission paths of the virus

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Researchers Explore Low Doses Of Radiation To Treat Severe Coronavirus Cases

Jim Conca

Low-dose radiation to the lungs may be a good therapy to reduce the mortality rates from COVID-19. The virus causes a cytokine storm - an uncontrolled systemic inflammatory response of the body that floods the lungs and kills the patient. Low doses of radiation can reduce the storm. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Healthcare /healthcare Editors' Pick editors-pick Business energy

Nuclear Power Plants - Refueling Amid COVID-19

Jim Conca

Nuclear plants refuel only once every two years. But the COVID-19 pandemic has caused problems. Local officials in Pennsylvania asked Limerick Nuclear Plant to delay refueling, but the company says refueling is needed for vital reliable power to the region's hospitals and critical facilities

Net Zero Natural Gas Plant -- The Game Changer

Jim Conca

An actual game changing technology is being demonstrated as we speak by Net Power. The Allam cycle involves burning gas with oxygen instead of air to generate electricity without emitting any CO2 or NOx. It also produces pipeline-ready CO2 and even water. At a cost below any other energy source

Oil & Gas Leaks Crocodile Tears Over Nuclear Waste Storage

Jim Conca

The obvious path forward for spent nuclear fuel is to put it all into dry cask storage at a single centralized storage facility. Two companies, Holtec and Waste Control Specialists, are vying for such a site but some local Oil & Gas companies are pushing back with fear

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Powered By Plutonium, NASA’s New Mars Rover Is Ready To Roll

Jim Conca

Last week, NASA’s new Mars rover, Perseverance, received its nuclear power source, a Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator, whose energy is provided by a tiny piece of Pu-238, supplied by the Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy, which will power the rover for 15 years. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Science /science Business energy

How HBO Got It Wrong On Chernobyl

Jim Conca

I was hoping HBO would have the courage and integrity to do their homework about radiation and consult even 1 nuclear scientist or radiobiologists. Or even read the U.N. Chernobyl Forum Report. But nooo…they decided that talking to journalists, historians and antinuclear activists was much better

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How Extremophile Bacteria Living In Nuclear Reactors Might Help Us Make Vaccines

Jim Conca

Extremophiles like the bacterium D. radiodurans that can withstand levels of radiation thousands of times what most animals can, are able to help us make vaccines faster, cheaper and safer. They use special molecular protectors to shield their repair proteins but not their DNA or RNA. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Healthcare /healthcare Editors' Pick editors-pick Business energy

So You Think We're Reducing Fossil Fuel Use? Think Again.

Jim Conca

If you think we’re doing a good job of curbing fossil fuel use, you're mistaken. Oil production is exploding in America. Growth in coal in the developing world shows no sign of slowing, and gas has kicked into high gear most everywhere. Renewables are increasing slower. Nuclear and hydro are flat

ThorCon Advanced Nuclear Reactor -- More Than Worth Its Weight In Salt

Jim Conca

ThorCon is a nuclear reactor with molten salt fuel containing thorium+uranium that is walk-away-safe. ThorCon would be completely manufactured in 150 to 500 ton blocks in a shipyard, assembled and towed to a site, with order of magnitude improvements in productivity, quality control, and build time

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Where Do We Stand On Uranium In The Post-Pandemic Energy World?

Jim Conca

Uranium has outperformed major commodities this year, even as the energy sector has suffered from the coronavirus pandemic. Uranium prices have risen significant since the pandemic began, up to $34 from $24/lb. Uranium supply and nuclear power should not be much affected in the post-pandemic world. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Business energy

Could Low Doses Of Radiation Raise COVID-19 Survival Rates?

Jim Conca

Low-dose radiation to the lungs is the best therapy to reduce the mortality rates from COVID-19. It reduces the cytokine storm - the deadly uncontrolled systemic inflammatory response of the body, flooding the lungs and killing the patient. It’s why we need ventilators. Radiation reduces the storm. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Healthcare /healthcare Business energy

3D Printing Has Entered The Nuclear Realm

Jim Conca

3D-printing has come to nuclear and it’s saving a lot of time and money, like 90%. Right now, it’s best for small spare parts, in developing micro-reactors, and in using new high-tech materials like carbon fiber composites, but expect it to eventually end up on Mars. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Science /science Business energy

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The Nuclear Industry Pushes Back Against Coronavirus

Jim Conca

The Nuclear Industry first developed pandemic response plans in 2006, but they were revised in March. Many seem obvious, like stockpiling critical protective gear and implementing screening methods for employees and visitors to critical facilities, but it’s the execution that takes real effort

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Solar Geoengineering -- We Better Do It Or We'll Burn

Jim Conca

Given our inability to reduce worldwide GHG emissions, should we try to reflect heat back into space? It’s called Solar Geoengineering and would give us the breathing room to cut fossil fuels on a more likely time scale. We’ve been studying it for decades and we know that it works

The World Begins To Slowly Cooperate On New Nuclear Energy

Jim Conca

US and Canada entered into an agreement on nuclear power cooperation to collaborate on advancing new nuclear reactor designs, especially small modular reactors. This follows recent previous agreements with Canada, Japan, Russia, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, Poland, Argentina and Romania