Thursday, February 18, 2010

TED TALKS | Bill Gates On A new Future For Energy

Maybe he can lead the way, someone needs to.

Bill Gates unveils his vision for the world's energy future, describing the need for "miracles" to avoid planetary catastrophe and explaining why he's backing a dramatically different type of nuclear reactor. The necessary goal? Zero carbon emissions globally by 2050.




"A molecule of uranium has a million times more energy than a molecule of coal." He and Nathan "Mosquito Zapper" Myrhvold are backing a nuclear approach. It's called Terrapower, and it's different from a standard nuclear reactor. Instead of burning the 1% of uranium-235 found in natural uranium, this reactor burns the other 99%, called uranium-238. You can use all the leftover waste from today's reactors as fuel. "In terms of fuel this really solves the problem." He showed a photo of depleted waste uranium in steel cylinders at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant in Kentucky -- the waste at this plant could supply the US energy needs for 200 years (woah!), and filtering seawater for uranium could supply energy for much longer than that."
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