Seductive nuclear power of Thor

Mail and Guardian 2 March 2012.

A mineral being discarded as “waste” may well be able to provide South Africa’s — and the world’s — energy needs for the next thousand years or more. Thorium, aptly named after the Norse god of thunder, Thor, is a nuclear fuel that is four times more abundant in the Earth’s crust than uranium. It was the topic of a conference in Cape Town last week, organised by the South African Institute for Mining and Metallurgy. ..

(Editorial comment: Perhaps it would be more prudent for SA to wait for Thorium reactors to become available off-the-shelf and let someone else do the pioneering, we don’t want another PBMR to divert much-needed capital from other needs.)