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posted by janrinok on Wednesday June 22, @02:42AM   Printer-friendly

BBC - Could nuclear desalination plants beat water scarcity?

There are communities on every continent running short of water, according to the United Nations. Unfortunately, although our planet is swathed by oceans and seas, only a tiny fraction of Earth's water - about 2.5% - is fresh, and demand for drinking water is projected to exceed supply by trillions of cubic metres by 2030. Desalination plants, which remove the salt from seawater, could help supply the fresh water needed. However, these plants are considered among the most expensive ways of creating drinking water- as they pump large volumes across membranes at high pressure, which is an extremely energy intensive process. One radical solution could be using floating vessels equipped with desalination systems.

Powered by nuclear reactors, these vessels could travel to islands, or coastlines, struck by drought, bringing with them both clean drinking water and power. "You could have them moving around on an intermittent basis, filling up tanks," says Mikal Bøe, chief executive of Core Power, which has come up with design for this type of desalination plant.

It may sound far-fetched but the US Navy has provided desalination services during disasters in the past, with the help of its nuclear-powered ships, while Russia already has a floating nuclear power station designed to potentially power desalination facilities.


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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by DannyB on Wednesday June 22, @03:50AM (2 children)

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday June 22, @03:50AM (#1255214) Journal

    The problem with nuclear fusion is that on cloudy days the solar panels do not collect as much energy from the nuclear fusion.

    --
    Calmly vote. Fill out your ballet and drop it in the ballet box. Don't dance around bothering the pole watchers.
    Starting Score:    1  point
    Moderation   +3  
       Informative=1, Funny=1, Touché=1, Total=3
    Extra 'Informative' Modifier   0  
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   5  
  • (Score: 2) by unauthorized on Wednesday June 22, @07:47AM

    by unauthorized (3776) on Wednesday June 22, @07:47AM (#1255272)

    We don't need no Sun, we can make our own [youtu.be] with blackjack and hookers!

  • (Score: 1) by shrewdsheep on Wednesday June 22, @07:59AM

    by shrewdsheep (5215) on Wednesday June 22, @07:59AM (#1255278)

    This is, when you turn the knob to the left of 0, running the reactor in fission mode for a while.