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Aug29-11, 06:06 PM
Astronuc's Avatar
P: 21,872
Quote Quote by ShotmanMaslo View Post
If scaling up is the big problem causing huge decreases in service life, why even do it? Maybe it would be more economical to build an array of more smaller kW range LFTRs with longer service life than fewer bigger ones with reduced service life (for the same power generation capacity).
Small (kW) LFTRs would be prohibitively expensive, and basically, small fissile systems would be prohibitively expensive from a commercial standpoint due to the security/safety and liability issues. Fissile material is classified as special nuclear material, and there are necessarily stiff regulations regarding control of SNM. Also, compact cores are much more sensitive with respect to control.

Economies of scale are partly driven by the necessary safety considerations associated with maintaining control and retention of fission products, i.e., keeping fission products from the environment.