|Steel (metric tons)||Concrete (cubic meters)|
Moreover, almost all the ThorCon concrete is non-structural, simply dumped into the steel sandwich walls; while a large part of the coal plant concrete is slow, labor intensive, reinforced concrete. On a resource basis, everything else being equal, the overnight cost of the ThorCon nuclear island should be less than one-third that of the coal plant’s steam generation side.
Of course, everything else is not equal. A 1GW ThorCon requires 1500 tons of very high quality graphite, 1300 tons of SUS 316, 220 tons of the superalloy Haynes 230, 2,500 tons of lead, and 200,000 m3 of excavation. But these and other adjustments add a little more than 100 million dollars to the cost of a 1 GWe plant or about $100/kW. See the Executive Summary for details. Overall the resource cost of the ThorCon nuclear island is less than one-half that of of the coal plant’s steam generation systems, less than a $500 per kW.
ThorCon is cheaper than coal, even before we compare fuel costs.