Scientists of Tomsk Polytechnic University (TPU) have developed thorium nuclear fuel for innovative nuclear systems of the new generation; it must be effective in already common reactors.
In TPU explained that the expansion of the raw material base of nuclear energy in the near future can be carried out by the use of thorium, the explored reserves of which on the planet are very large.
Thus, scientists have developed a synthesis technology that will help produce various types of nuclear fuel with additional internal safety barriers, providing the ultimate burnout of fissile isotopes and the minimum possible content of hazardous isotopes in spent fuel.
“In our case, the product of plasma-chemical synthesis is nanodispersed powder of a mixture of oxides and carbides of metals. The powder is the basis of a new class of nuclear fuel materials, the properties of which make it possible to build nuclear power plants of the next IV generation,” said Igor Shamanin at the university.
In addition, as part of this study, scientists are studying the kinetics of plasma-chemical reactions: changing the parameters of the plasma, affect what processes and with what speed in it occur.
For example, if the stability of the plasma flow is not ensured and it is possible to go beyond the limits of the operating temperature range, the properties of the product will be unsatisfactory, said Shamanin.
The expert added that now Siberian scientists, by controlling the parameters and the elemental composition of the plasma, create new ways of synthesizing materials with unique properties.