Eighteen-year-old Taylor Wilson has designed a compact nuclear reactor that could convert waste from old atomic weapons into power for homes and factories and maybe even one day space colonies.
According to TED Blog, Wilson, who graduated from high school in May, first came to attention at the tender age of 14 after he designed a nuclear fission reactor he planned to build in his parents' garage.
He spoke about that at TED2012 and at TED2013 Conference in Southern California, he spoke about his latest project on Thursday.
AFP reports he said: "It’s about bringing something old, fission, into the 21st Century. I think this has huge potential to change the world."
According to TED Blog, he said: "I realized that the biggest problem we face — what all these other problems come down to — is energy. This is a talk about fission — about taking something old and bringing it into the 21st century… I think this has a huge potential to change the world."
TED Blog reports that what Wilson has invented is a Small Modular Fission Reactor that can be built in factories and shipped to anywhere they are needed. The reactors are installed three meters underground which makes safer from the perspective of counter-terrorism than reactors built above the ground. They are also molten salt reactors, meaning, according to TED Blog, that they can run on the waste from old nuclear weapons and thus make it possible to find a way to use the material from weapon stockpiles, another safety issue from the counter-terrorism perspective.
According to AFP, the reactor is capable of generating 50-100 megawatts of electricity, enough to power as many as 100,000 homes
Written By: JohnThomas Didymuscontinue to source article at digitaljournal.com