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Nuclear Plant Accidents: Sodium Reactor Experiment

, director, Nuclear Safety Project

Disaster by Design/Safety by Intent #39

Disaster by Design

The best aspect of the defense-in-depth approach to nuclear power safety is that one thing, even one very bad thing, is unlikely to trigger an accident. If offsite power is lost, onsite power from emergency diesel generators will automatically take over. If a pipe ruptures to drain cooling water from the reactor vessel, emergency pumps will automatically start up to supply makeup cooling water. If a pump fails, at least one other pump is ready to step in. And so on. It takes a lot of things to defeat defense-in-depth. Read more >

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Nuclear Merger

, director, Nuclear Safety Project

There’s talk (and writing) of another nuclear merger in the United States. Read more >

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Nuclear Plant Emergency Preparedness – Re-HAB

, director, Nuclear Safety Project

Disaster by Design/ Safety by Intent #38

Disaster by Design

It takes two to tango.

It takes a village to raise a child.

It takes between the tango and the child-rearing numbers to respond to a nuclear plant accident. Read more >

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Analysis of North Korea’s Musudan Missile Test–Part 1

, co-director and senior scientist

After four failed attempts to launch its so-called Musudan missile (called Hwasong-10 in North Korea), it appears to have had at least one success in a new sets of flight tests on June 21. That test tells us something interesting about the range of the missile. Read more >

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Nuclear Plant Emergency Preparedness – Southern Exposure 2015

, director, Nuclear Safety Project

Disaster by Design/ Safety by Intent #37

Disaster by Design

Disaster by Design/Safety by Intent #35 described some of the limitations in the emergency exercises conducted at least once every two years for U.S. nuclear power plants. The exercises are scheduled months in advance and last but a handful of hours. Real nuclear plant accidents are never scheduled in advance and take weeks to stabilize and years to recover. The value of the biennial exercises is diminished by these constraints. Read more >

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