SONE Newsletter 271 - December 2021

Posted by Wade Allison on 4 December 2021 in Newsletters

Tagged with: AGM, Battery fires, Core Power, GBNews, LNT, Mikal Bøe, Nuclear waste, SONE website, Tobi Menzies, YouTube.

This month

  • A message from Rosie, a dog in New Zealand

  • Minutes of the AGM, October 2021

  • News items

  • Some video links of interest

We wish all Members of SONE a Merry Christmas and a New Year stuffed with news of the progress of Nuclear Power!

A message from Rosie, a dog in New Zealand

Rosie the dog, and the effect of urine on grass

With thanks to Christopher Feltham, a retired radiologist in New Zealand, and his dog Rosie, for this illustration of the failure of the Precautionary Principle and the Linear No Threshold response model in biology.

Observant dogs and their owners may be aware that excessive nitrogen kills the grass on the lawn. Based on this valid evidence the safety industry, if it were asked, would likely stop dogs going onto lawns, as a precaution. You cannot be too careful, you know! However, as the picture shows, the grass around the dead area received less-than a-fatal dose of nitrogen and thrived far better than the grass further away that got none. Fortunately, the doctrinaire safety modellers have had no jurisdiction over dogs and lawns, even in nuclear-free New Zealand!

Unfortunately, they did take over the safety of ionising radiation in the 1950s and we allowed them to enshrine their naïve mathematical ideas in legal regulations. And today these still impede the optimal use of radiation technology in medicine and shackle the deployment of nuclear power with unwarranted barriers and costs.

Minutes of SONE Annual General Meeting 2021


Held at The Institute of Civil Engineers, One Great George Street,
London SW1P 3AA

Monday 4th October 2021 at 2pm

Present: Wade Allison, John Assheton, Neville Chamberlain, John Crawford, Peter Havercan, Robert Maclachlan, Angus Ross, Robin Smith, Paul Spare, Kevin Stagg, Marie Zabell and (from Core Power by invitation) Giulio Gennaro and Tobi Menzies.

  1. Apologies for absence were received from Gordon Adam, John Brenner, Adrian Bull, Chris Cockcroft, Ken Durrands, George Nissen, Terry Wynn, Barry Yates.

  2. Neville Chamberlain announced the sad news that Professor Jack Simmons, long serving member of SONE and its Committee, had passed away. The Secretary agreed to send a letter of condolence from the meeting to his wife, Heather, and to note Jack’s contribution in a future Newsletter.

  3. The Minutes of the previous Annual General Meeting held by Zoom on October 25, 2020 (and circulated with the agenda) were accepted.

  4. There were no Matters Arising

  5. (Wade Allison took the chair for this item) Neville Chamberlain was re-elected Chairman of SONE for the year 2021/22 and a Director (nem con)

  6. Wade Allison was re-elected Honorary Secretary and a Director, and Ian McFarlane was re-elected Honorary Treasurer and a Director.

  7. The following were re-elected to the Committee for the year 2021/22: Neville Chamberlain, Wade Allison, Ian McFarlane, John Assheton, Adrian Bull, Robin Smith, Paul Spare, and Robert Maclachlan.
    In addition Peter Havercan and Marie Zabell were proposed and elected for the year.

  8. The Directors' Annual Report for 2020/21, previously circulated to all members by email, was adopted. The rejection of the application by SONE to speak and present the case for nuclear power at the COP26 Meeting in Glasgow, November 2021, was noted and regretted. It was remarked that 11 other applications supporting nuclear power had also been rejected. The rejection was evidently political. Several Committee Members expect to attend the Meeting, anyway.

  9. The Accounts for 2020/21, previously circulated to all members with the Agenda, were discussed. They showed a marked reduction in expenditure, largely from reduced postage and meeting costs. The Treasurer reported that membership subscriptions were stable. The Accounts accepted by the Meeting. Robert Maclachlan was thanked for preparing the short form of the Accounts introduced last year..

  10. The Treasurer reported that the financial outlook was not currently a cause for concern. Further savings will come from the new website, thanks to our new webmaster and SONE Committee Member, Peter Havercan. We now have a far better website without large outgoing fees. The Meeting thanked Peter for the considerable amount of work that he had put into this.

  11. The Secretary, looking to the future, suggested the prospects for nuclear energy were becoming increasingly positive. The pandemic and the frequency of significant outbreaks of extreme weather have made serious change more politically acceptable. The need is to reach nuclear provision without incurring excessive social instability. He is writing a new book to this end. He is particularly excited by potential developments in nuclear powered shipping.

  12. The Chairman introduced Tobi Menzies and Guilio Gennaro from Core Power (UK) Ltd. Tobi gave a presentation to the Meeting on their plans for nuclear in the maritime sphere with additional comments from Guilio. This drew much interest and discussion, and they undertook to send his slides for posting on the SONE website.
    The Chairman then thanked Tobi and Guilio for a most stimulating session.

  13. The Meeting closed at 3.45 pm.

Wade Allison, Secretary

News items

Nuclear-derived hydrogen

NNL and DNV team up for nuclear-derived hydrogen study

Nuclear “waste”

On the subject of nuclear “waste”, a video from years ago that should be watched today:
Ted Rockwell conducts school of the Senate on the issue of safely storing used nuclear fuel. Ted Rockwell is one of the true pioneers of nuclear technology. He was one of the engineers on the Manhattan Project, served as Hyman G. Rickover's Technical Director for more than a decade, was a major contributor to the development of the Nautilus and Shippingport, wrote the book on radiation shielding, and joined two other Naval Reactors engineers to found MPR Associates, one of the premier engineering firms in the country.

Renewables and batteries

“Renewables” addicts cling to batteries as if their future depended on them – it does, but it won’t work. A media report on a battery for a wind farm this time, but the safety is poor, the regulations negligent and the battery size 1/100 what would be required to bridge a windless period of a week or two:

Another Tesla battery fire, taking the house with it: spontaneously-combusts

A discussion with Mikal Bøe of CORE POWER (UK) Follow the science: Is the future nuclear? - ClimateTech @ London Tech Week 2021

An interview on GBNews. Before you watch the threatened “Farage and Trump”, watch this – it’s better.

Wade Allison, Hon. Sec.
1 December 2021