Brian Wang’s Next Big Future site posted last Tuesday the Google Tech Talk by Joe Bonometti about thorium as a fuel. Brian also has the link to Mr. Bonometti’s PowerPoint file that is also linked here.

I have the tech talk embedded here for convenience. It runs nearly an hour, with just over 41 minutes of actual speaking mostly using the PowerPoint slides as visuals. In fairness, the PowerPoint is just superb and the talk offers little more than guidance. I found that downloading the power point and listening to the talk to be much more useful than trying to follow Mr. Bonometti using the YouTube download alone as the resolution is small in the standard frame or poor resolution in full screen. If you have MS PowerPoint or open office and wish to see one of the very best, concise and thorough discussions of thorium used in fluid reactors, or have a need to share or teach this material in the basic way – This Is IT!

The page Brian uses for Mr. Bonometti’s talk also includes a notice that James Henson, the NASA staffer who somehow has managed to stay employed while vigorously pushing the CO2 global warming idea, has a “draft open letter” to President Elect Obama. In the letter Henson offers that thorium reactors could be useful in reducing global warming emissions. Well, “Duh,” as the youth would say.

A review of the behavior of Henson does nothing positive for me and the addition of an “endorsement of sorts” by this gentleman actually casts a sense of dubiousness on the whole thing. But many or actually most people have no idea just how wrong and mendacious Henson is even if his motives are honorable. So I mentally have to obliterate the man’s view in my mind by reminding myself that thorium research and the potential has been known most of Mr. Henson’s and my own life. I suppose that the draft letter will be of some use, but faced with the hard economic and security facts that Presidents must meet, the letter is little other than a publicity stunt.

Mr. Bonometti’s effort on the other hand is just superb. If by some miracle some of the White House dot gov visitors who come by here are still visiting after the transition, the 41 minutes of Joe Bonometti speaking to the Google crowd are in fact quite useful both to policy experts and the general public.

There has to be a future for thorium. But as Bonometti makes clear there are barriers ahead to public safety as thorium is safer and to economic health as thorium is more efficient both in using capital and net consumer electricity rates. It should seem obvious that thorium offers a huge economic development opportunity in capital, jobs and consumer savings. The first most obvious place to start giving support is to visit Senator Orrin Hatch’s site and boost him along. If enough people inquire on how to help, he just might let slip some tools that we citizens can use to push things along even more. Keep in mind the Senator’s prime driver is producing thorium from his state’s enormous deposits. In any case to get to his goal the whole system has to be in place. More power to him as the middle aged would say.

The exasperating thing about today is that fusion isn’t in our economic toolbox yet and may be a few years or decades out. But thorium can be – now – the only thing coming up short is public support driving the political will.


1 Comment so far

  1. Roy Harvie on December 24, 2008 9:26 AM

    This is the right answer! Don’t build LWRs

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