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Title: Development of Nuclear Renewable Oil Shale Systems for Flexible Electricity and Reduced Fossil Fuel Emissions

We propose the development of Nuclear Renewable Oil Shale Systems (NROSS) in northern Europe, China, and the western United States to provide large supplies of flexible, dispatchable, very-low-carbon electricity and fossil fuel production with reduced CO2 emissions. NROSS are a class of large hybrid energy systems in which base-load nuclear reactors provide the primary energy used to produce shale oil from kerogen deposits and simultaneously provide flexible, dispatchable, very-low-carbon electricity to the grid. Kerogen is solid organic matter trapped in sedimentary shale, and large reserves of this resource, called oil shale, are found in northern Europe, China, and the western United States. NROSS couples electricity generation and transportation fuel production in a single operation, reduces lifecycle carbon emissions from the fuel produced, improves revenue for the nuclear plant, and enables a major shift toward a very-low-carbon electricity grid. NROSS will require a significant development effort in the United States, where kerogen resources have never been developed on a large scale. In Europe, however, nuclear plants have been used for process heat delivery (district heating), and kerogen use is familiar in certain countries. Europe, China, and the United States all have the opportunity to use large scale NROSS development to enablemore » major growth in renewable generation and either substantially reduce or eliminate their dependence on foreign fossil fuel supplies, accelerating their transitions to cleaner, more efficient, and more reliable energy systems.« less
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Publication Date:
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Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
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Resource Relation:
Conference: ICAPP 2015, Nice (France), 5/3/2015 - 5/6/2015
Research Org:
Idaho National Laboratory (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
Nuclear Renewable; Oil Shale; Reduced Fossil Fuel Emissions