MIT Grad Students Propose Nearly Waste-Free Nuclear Power


Leslie Dewan and Mark Massie are PhD students in nuclear engineering at MIT. But they've already formed a startup called Transatomic Power, hoping to disrupt the nuclear power industry. Their design, called a "Waste Annihilating Molten Salt Reactor," has important advantages over traditional reactors; it runs entirely on nuclear waste and achieves a much higher burn factor: up to 98%, instead of just 3%, eliminating most nuclear waste. Dawan and Massie already have a heavy-weight backer, Russ Wilcox, Transatomic's CEO and co-founder, who, as one of the founders of E Ink, commercialized electronic paper, licensing the technology to Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Recently, they gave a talk at Tedx about the advantages of their reactor.

Is this part of an industry-wide trend?

Images: various, Tedx