Oklo Works Towards Nuclear Power Alternative Energy
“There’s enough uranium available to create clean energy for 10 billion people for 10 billion years,” says Jake DeWitte. That amounts to an essentially endless resource — enough to power a future without fossil fuels or weather-dependent resources like solar and wind power.
There’s a catch, however: That power must be harnessed by splitting a uranium atom, creating a nuclear reaction.
The long shadows of Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, and Fukushima Daiichi have led to a misperception among many that nuclear power is a dark, dangerous option. And while it is merely steam that pours from nuclear reactors’ cooling towers, there is radioactive waste generated by them — waste that must be locked in a nuclear tomb, to be undisturbed for 100,000 years.
But what if we could build nuclear reactors not as imposing, brutalist boxes and massive towers, but in a small A-frame cabin where the reactors could power a town for decades? And what if those nuclear reactors actually ran off of nuclear waste, rather than just producing it?
It’s not a pipe dream. It’s a reality that DeWitte and his wife, Caroline Cochran, believe is achievable.