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  1. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    23 May '09 10:40
    How small can a nuclear powered vehicle be? I know aircraft carriers and strategic subs often have them, but what about nuclear cars, tanks, helicoters, jets?
  2. 23 May '09 10:47
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    How small can a nuclear powered vehicle be? I know aircraft carriers and strategic subs often have them, but what about nuclear cars, tanks, helicoters, jets?
    Nuclear power is used in space craft and can be quite small. I believe it would be perfectly feasible- though not desirable - to make a nuclear powered car.
  3. 23 May '09 11:16 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Nuclear power is used in space craft and can be quite small. I believe it would be perfectly feasible- though not desirable - to make a nuclear powered car.
    Can you imagine it in a car crash? Or, worse, a car pileup? -as if the crash itself wouldn’t be bad enough, you would worry about radiation leaking out and causing contamination and radiation sickness!

    -oh, and that isn’t to mention what would happen if a nuclear critical mass was created as a result of a freak car crash!!!
  4. 23 May '09 11:19
    I don't think it would be economically efficient at that scale. And of course, a nuclear powered car would be far too dangerous.
  5. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    24 May '09 13:39
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    I don't think it would be economically efficient at that scale. And of course, a nuclear powered car would be far too dangerous.
    That depends on the kind of power. If it was from fusion, say by some kind of miracle we found out we could make a 100 horsepower sized tokamak the size of a clothes washer or something, then the power would be derived from helium or deuterium or some such. Or our miracle fusion unit could be a small laser fusion device like the upcoming laser ignition experiment. If it was either of those devices there would be no danger of nasty contaminants, at least not even in the same ballpark as that represented by some kind of small fission reactor. Also, there is already a nuclear battery, albeit on a tiny scale right now. It works by taking a known alpha ray emitting isotope and using it to charge up a nanosized capacitor which bends and then shorts out when the charges build up enough to physically bend the nanobeam, it shorts out and transfers its tiny charge of electrons to an external circuit. Of course at this stage of the game it is spitting out nanowatts but if billions of the things can be designed, there would be no moving parts (except for the nanocantalevers) and would also not be much danger in a collision. Of course right now I don't thing the existing unit could power a digital watch much less a car, obviously billions of them running in parallel would be required.
    Besides, a fission reactor in space for unmanned craft doesn't need much in the way of shielding, no wet ware to worry about and the electronics and/or photonics inside can be built to withstand thousands of rads of radiation so those puppies can be practically a floating radiation machine. BTW, antimatter reactors are a lot further along, engineering wise than fission or fusion reactors for spacecraft. Of course antimatter reactors would be the cats meow for anything but it's not going to happen on earth in THIS millenium anyway.
  6. Standard member patauro
    Patricia
    03 Jun '09 11:26
    I had a fussion powered bicycle once, but is was larger that a foodball stadium, very hard to pedal, it broke a lot, parts were very expensive and hard to get, and....OK, I'll be quiet now
  7. 03 Jun '09 13:21
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    How small can a nuclear powered vehicle be? I know aircraft carriers and strategic subs often have them, but what about nuclear cars, tanks, helicoters, jets?
    As small as a pinto.....just don't accidently hit one in the rear.
  8. 03 Jun '09 15:56 / 1 edit
    There have been a nuclear car already, but the market didn't want it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Nucleon
  9. 06 Jun '09 13:21
    oh my god that is so cool

    bet it would go quite quick to... not to sure about the acceleration ...
  10. 06 Jun '09 16:09 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by FabianFnas
    There have been a nuclear car already, but the market didn't want it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Nucleon
    It says in:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Nucleon

    “…The main dangers of the car would be the radiation, nuclear waste and a possibility of a small nuclear meltdown…”

    -but it has just occurred to me that this problem would be solved if a Thorium reactor was used because, even if the Thorium leaked out, it wouldn’t matter because Thorium has low radioactivity! And if you use an ‘energy amplifier’ type of nuclear power reactor ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_amplifier ) there would be no chance of a nuclear meltdown. Also, such a reactor would produce very little nuclear waste.

    But here is the big catch; how do you design a practical energy amplifier type of Thorium nuclear power reactor that is so small and light that you can fit it in a car!? -can this really be done?
  11. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    07 Jun '09 08:25
    I want to make the Landkreuzer with a nuclear engine.
  12. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    10 Jun '09 01:34
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    I want to make the Landkreuzer with a nuclear engine.
    What you are more likely to get is a transparent plastic engine, a New Clear engine
  13. 13 Jun '09 23:02
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    That depends on the kind of power. If it was from fusion, say by some kind of miracle we found out we could make a 100 horsepower sized tokamak the size of a clothes washer or something, then the power would be derived from helium or deuterium or some such. Or our miracle fusion unit could be a small laser fusion device like the upcoming laser ignition expe ...[text shortened]... be the cats meow for anything but it's not going to happen on earth in THIS millenium anyway.
    Umm actually, Fusion still irradiates the walls of the reactor, it just does it more slowly and the amount of radioactive waste is reduced to the walls of the reactor itself, which from my understanding, have to be replaced about once a year.
  14. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    13 Jun '09 23:24
    http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=78503
  15. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    13 Jun '09 23:28 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    I want to make the Landkreuzer or Ratte with a nuclear engine.
    www.youtube.com/watch?v=yL0h19ci6dw

    http://strangevehicles.greyfalcon.us/Landkreuzer%20P1000%20Ratte.htm