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Aug 11, 2022

How artificial intelligence could lower nuclear energy costs

Posted by in categories: economics, nuclear energy, robotics/AI

Nuclear power plants provide large amounts of electricity without releasing planet-warming pollution. But the expense of running these plants has made it difficult for them to stay open. If nuclear is to play a role in the U.S. clean energy economy, costs must come down. Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory are devising systems that could make nuclear energy more competitive using artificial intelligence.

Nuclear power plants are expensive in part because they demand constant monitoring and maintenance to ensure consistent power flow and safety. Argonne is midway through a $1 million, three-year project to explore how smart, computerized systems could change the economics.

“Operation and maintenance costs are quite relevant for nuclear units, which currently require large site crews and extensive upkeep,” said Roberto Ponciroli, a principal nuclear engineer at Argonne. “We think that autonomous operation can help to improve their profitability and also benefit the deployment of advanced reactor concepts.”

Aug 10, 2022

Could Hydrogen Help Save Nuclear?

Posted by in categories: economics, nuclear energy

A lack of market value and historically low natural gas prices are just some of the reasons making it hard for nuclear to compete in certain markets.

And with the rise of more renewables coming onto the grid, many utilities are considering a hybrid or integrated systems approach to improve the economics for baseload energy sources like nuclear reactors.

One opportunity is to utilize nuclear’s thermal heat and electricity to produce hydrogen.

Aug 9, 2022

Meta’s latest AI chatbot has mixed feelings about CEO Mark Zuckerberg: “It is funny that he has all this money and still wears the same clothes!”

Posted by in categories: economics, robotics/AI

Aug 9, 2022

Sophisticated models provide a roadmap for Southern Africa’s clean energy future

Posted by in categories: economics, energy

The economy of Southern Africa is rapidly developing, driving a growing demand for electricity. Efficiently meeting this demand will require balancing social, economic, geographic, technological and environmental considerations.

Researchers at UC Santa Barbara led an international team that analyzed the region’s resources and . Using this data, they developed an portfolio that most effectively meets Southern Africa’s 2040 energy requirements, finding that wind and solar are the region’s most cost-effective options. What’s more, their model’s proposal effectively freezes at 2020 levels while doubling the amount of the grid can produce. A detailed analysis appears in the journal Joule.

Currently, Southern Africa’s 315 million people use about 275 terawatt hours, roughly the same amount as California. “However, Southern Africa is expected to double its electricity demand by 2040,” said co-lead and corresponding author Ranjit Deshmukh, an assistant professor in UCSB’s Environmental Studies Program. “Developing the region’s excellent wind, solar and natural gas resources is the least expensive option for its consumers, and can meet this demand without increasing the region’s electricity sector carbon emissions.”

Aug 5, 2022

Futureseek Daily Link Review; 05 August 2022

Posted by in categories: cosmology, cybercrime/malcode, economics, mathematics, particle physics, quantum physics, robotics/AI, space travel, surveillance

* At Long Last, Mathematical Proof That Black Holes Are Stable * Who Gets to Work in the Digital Economy? * Mice produce rat sperm with technique that could help conservation.

* Quantum computer can simulate infinitely many chaotic particles * Radar / AI & ML: Scaling False Peaks * Cyber security for the human world | George Loukas | TEDx.

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Aug 4, 2022

What Are States Planning To Do With Federal EV Charging Funds?

Posted by in categories: economics, energy, law, sustainability, transportation

State plans for the National EV Charging Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program were due to the Joint Office of Energy and Transportation this week, and many states released a draft plan for feedback in the last couple of months. The NEVI Program is one of two programs in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that provide funding for publicly-accessible electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure. Program funds can be used to plan for, install, operate, and maintain EV charging stations along travel corridors, with a focus on designated Alternative Fuel Corridors. Funding under the NEVI program totals $5 billion from 2022 through 2026. Funds will be allocated to states each year for implementation based on a pre-established formula, provided the departments of transportation in those states submit a satisfactory EV charging plan to the Joint Office, with updates to the plan required annually.

So what’s in the draft plans?

I pulled a few draft plans to look at as a starting point, aiming for a cross section of states in different regions, with different politics, with different economic stakes in the EV transition, at different places in EV adoption, with different weather. I couldn’t get quite the representative cross section I wanted because there are still big gaps in which states have released a draft plan. I decided to start with Alabama, California, Texas, and Wyoming.

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Aug 4, 2022

TOP 5 Longevity Startups. Who Will Make Us Immortal?

Posted by in categories: economics, education, life extension

I don’t buy the Jeanne Calment story.


How can we live longer and be healthier? These startups are trying to extend our lives.
✱ Download the Dizraptor app to invest in technologies of the future https://dizraptor.onelink.me/1kIK/samumed.

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Aug 3, 2022

Net zero carbon in the concrete industry will require not just changes in manufacturing standards

Posted by in categories: economics, energy, sustainability, transportation

The concrete industry is just one of many looking at new manufacturing methods to reduce its carbon footprint. These efforts are essential to fulfilling the Paris Agreement, which asks each of its signees to achieve a net-zero carbon economy by 2050. However, a new study from researchers in Japan and Belgium and focusing exclusively on Japan concludes that improved manufacturing technologies will only get the industry within 80% of its goal. Using a dynamic material flows analysis model, the study claim that the other 20% will have to come from changes in how concrete is consumed and managed, putting expectations on the buyer as well as the seller.

Electric cars, fluorescent lights, water-saving shower heads, these are all examples of efforts to lower our . However, the are made from the supply side, with companies developing new technologies that reduce the amount of energy consumed for the same amount of use. Notably, they put little demand on the user, who can use the product no differently than before.

The same holds true for concrete, the most consumed human-made material in the world. Many studies have shown the potential for making the concrete industry more energy efficient through esoteric efforts like “clinker-to-cement ratio reduction,” “cement substitution with alternative binders,” and “ capture and utilization.” The problem, explains Dr. Takuma Watari, a researcher at the Japan National Institute for Environmental Studies and lead of the new study, is that supply-side efforts are not enough if nations are serious about achieving net-zero carbon emissions.

Aug 3, 2022

Small Modular Nuclear Quickly Becoming a Reality in the Quest for Net Zero

Posted by in categories: economics, nuclear energy

Nuclear power’s revival is being led by small modular reactor technology.


Small Modular Reactors or SMRs may revive the nuclear fission reactor industry around the world. These nuclear power plants are a fraction of the size of existing facilities. They take less time to build and have safety features that make a Fukushima or Chornobyl-like event next to impossible.

As the world pivots from burning fossil fuels to generating electricity and heat, SMRs may have a role to play to get the global economy to carbon neutrality or what is referred to as the net zero 2050 target date.

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Aug 3, 2022

World’s first wind turbine with recyclable blades is up and spinning

Posted by in categories: economics, sustainability

Separating the resin, fiberglass, and wood, among others, is achieved through using a mild acid solution. The materials can then go into the circular economy, creating new products like suitcases or flat-screen casings without the need to call on more raw resources.

The RecyclableBlade technology was developed in Aalborg, Denmark, and the blades were manufactured in Hull in the UK (pictured above). The nacelles were produced and installed in Cuxhaven, Germany. Siemens Gamesa has a plan to make all of its wind turbine blades fully recyclable by 2030 and all of its wind turbines fully recyclable by 2040.

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