In recent years, researchers have shown a great interest in using Thorium as a nuclear fuel to create nuclear power. Many countries have started to test Thorium nuclear reactor. On the other hand, Norway is not lagged behind in this sector too. Oslo based Thor Energy is pairing up with the Norwegian government and US-based company Westinghouse in order to begin a four-year Thorium nuclear reactor test.
For long, Uranium and Plutonium have been used as a nuclear fuel to create nuclear power. But these elements are rare and costly. So researchers started to find something else that could play the same role of Uranium or Plutonium. In 1828, Norwegian mineralogist Morten Thrane Esmark discovered a natural element called Thorium. This natural element was identified by the Swedish chemist Jöns Jakob Berzelius and named after Thor, the Norse god of thunder.
However, researchers found that Thorium can also be used as a nuclear fuel to create nuclear power. They also discovered that Thorium is about three times more abundant than Uranium. Researcher thought breaking with convention and switching to an alternative energy will be safer, cleaner and more efficient. Hence, many countries started to switch from Uranium to Thorium.
Thor Energy has found that Thorium-based nuclear fuel has several advantages over Uranium-based fuel, including better waste characteristics, improved proliferation resistance, and abundant raw material supply. Now the company is pairing up with the Norwegian government company Westinghouse in order to begin a four-year Thorium nuclear reactor test at the Halden Nuclear Reactor in Norway.
Source: Singularity HUB