The United States Atomic Energy Commision has been working with thorium beginning 1958 with the Martin Company now Lockheed Martin. It is not a new concept.
ATOMIC ENERGY COMMISSION
WASHINGTON 25, D.C.
IN REPLY REFER TO:
SOURCE MATERIAL LICENSE
License No. C-4283
The Martin Company
Dated.SEP 7 1958
Attentions Mr. Ross G. Maculay
Pursuant to the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 and Section 40.21 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10 - Atomic Energy, Chapter 1, Part 40 - Control of Source Material, you are hereby licensed to receive possession of and title to, at the above state location, seventy-five thousand (75,000)
pounds of thorium magnesium alloy containing not more than 4% thorium for fabrication.
You are further licensed to transfer and deliver possession of and title to refined source material to any person licensed by the Atomic Energy Commission, within the limits of his license.
As a condition of this license, you are required to maintain records of your inventories, receipts and transfers of refined source material. This license is subject to all the provisions of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 now or hereafter in effect and to all valid rules and regulations of the U. S. Atomic Energy Commission, including 10 CFR 20, "Standards For Protection Against Radiation." Neither this license nor any right under this license shall be assigned or otherwise transferred in violation of the provisions of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954. This license shall expire September 30, 1960
FOR THE ATOMIC ENERGY COMMISSION
J. C. Delaney
Chief, Nuclear Materials Section
Division of Licensing & Regulation
All this is good and well but we need to get serious about building some of these to test the feasibility and various methodologies and attempt to solve some of the problems brought up by the critics. I'm talking about a major infusion of federal money and backed by the kind of intensity we had on the Manhattan Project. We need to ram this thing through and get it done. The goal should be to convert to a very high percentage of thorium powered electric generating stations by 2040. We should bring these units on line as the old coal units need to be replaced. We need to get the technology down pat so that we will be in the second or 3rd generation designs by the time we need to replace the coal burners.
No matter what the naysayers say, we would be better off with thorium reactors than the current nuclear designs. Nuclear offers the only sensible answer to our long term needs and anybody with any sense can see that we need viable alternatives. If anyone knows of a better alternative what is it?
Retired Mechanical Engineer