Bill Gates turns his attention to nuclear-powered shipping
The Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is also the chairman of TerraPower, a nuclear innovation company that today announced a new venture with Mikal Bøe’s CORE POWER, French nuclear materials handling specialist Orano and American company Southern Company.
As a proof of concept for a medium-scale commercial-grade reactor, the four companies submitted an application to the US Department of Energy to take part in cost-share risk reduction awards under the Advanced Reactor Demonstration Programme to build a prototype MSR.
“We’re pleased to work with such outstanding partners in developing game-changing technology to help transport and industry transition to a clean energy future. The implications of the MSR for transport and industry could be transformational, as we seek to build scale-appropriate technology and broad acceptance of modern and durable liquid-fuelled atomic power to shape the future of how we deal with climate change,” stated Mikal Bøe, CEO of London-based CORE POWER.
The CORE POWER units are based on molten salt marine reactors (m-MSRs), a thorium-based technology that dates back to the 1960s and is capable of powering today 's largest ships afloat.
The fuel is the coolant in the m-MSR atomic battery and the coolant is the fuel, so it is not possible to lose the coolant. Thorium is a weakly radioactive metallic chemical element most commonly found in India and is a material that has been studied closely by Gates' TerraPower of late.
Maritime Business World