Well the AP1000 is the only approved design and my understanding of that design doesn't lead me to that conclusion. Safer reactor designs are already available, the features aren't implemented in AP-1000 because they are too expensive so the AP-1000's design still falls short. For accident mitigation the EPR design is better. Briefly the buildings that service the reactor are split into four (main) operational divisions (and the reactor containment). An accident, failure or maintenance in the other areas can be mitigated by the other divisions. It's planning, and being prepared for, problems.
You know, it's odd, I searched my posts multiple times and didn't find the AP1000 listed? I didn't even mention GenIII.
First: I was pretty much talking globally in my posts, thus the NRC could be considered a 'local' issue.
Second: More designs can gain approval.
AP1000 vs EPR: Per wiki the AP1000 has a core damage frequency of 5.09e-7 per plant years, EPR is rated at 6.1e-7 per plant year. So by that metric they're both neck and neck (e-7), with the AP1000 having a slight lead over the EPR. The EPR is about 50% more powerful though, so on a per kWh basis it's a touch safer, as you'd need 3 APs to replace 2 EPR. You're still very close though.
For example, Yankee Rowe, was a controlled shutdown of a functioning reactor. It cost half a billion dollars to clean-up and it was only 137 Megawatts, less than a quarter of the size of TMI-2.
The problem here is that you're assuming a linear relationship between clean-up costs and reactor power size. Personally, I figure that the cost has an extremely large static component - IE the relationship is not linear, and should be cheaper per MW the larger the reactor.
Basically, just getting set up to handle the cleanup is more expensive than actually doing it, especially for a smaller plant.
NRC guidelines permit the venting of radioactive effluents into the environment every two weeks Firethorn. There is no evidence that the AP-1000 series improves on that.
Citation? Hell, citation that plants routinely vent radioactive materials into the environment outside of emergency circumstances!
Actually it is specifically the Thermal Containment ratio, which refers to how much concrete is in the dome, is higher in TMI than other NPP concrete domes.
My point was that even a normal dome will still tank an aircraft.
AP-1000 is a rehash of the Standard Westinghouse Nuclear Utility Power Plant (SNUPPs) examples of which are installed at Wolf Creek [wikipedia.org] and Callaway,
This is a bit like comparing a 4 stroke 4 cylinder from the '80s to a modern 4 stroke. Sure, there may be broad similarities, but there's also refinements in pretty much every aspect.
I'm afraid that I have to go - I've re-entered college to upgrade my degree and have to get to class. I need to get some other work done, so I'm afraid that I'm going to take a while to respond to your other posts, as well and being unable to go quite as deep into the research as I'd like.
Personally, rather than going 'greenfield', I'd prefer to do an immediate reconstruction in most areas - remove the old reactor, and put a new plant down in it's place, whether that be an AP1000, EPR*, or one of the other dozen approved GenIII designs out there. AP1k might be the only one in production, but it's not the only one approved.
*EPR might not be approved in the USA, but getting it so shouldn't be a huge regulatory hurdle, relatively speaking, especially if it's as safe as you say.