Breeder Reactors in France

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Science  11 Apr 1980:
Vol. 208, Issue 4440, pp. 137-144
DOI: 10.1126/science.208.4440.137


France relies on nuclear power as an important part of her energy program. Anticipating problems with the availability of natural uranium before the year 2020, the French have been pursuing a three-stage program of development of breeder reactors. The third reactor in this program, the near-commercial plant Super Phenix Mark I, is expected to reach power operation in 1983. Although there are still some uncertainties, particularly about the date when the breeder will become competitive with other energy sources, the outlook is considered favorable and preliminary designs for commercial plants are under way.