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Energies 2014, 7(11), 7673-7693; doi:10.3390/en7117673

A Mine-Based Uranium Market Clearing Model

1
University of Tartu Institute of Physics, Ravila 14C, Tartu 50411, Estonia
2
Nuclear and Radiation Engineering Program, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 August 2014 / Revised: 15 October 2014 / Accepted: 10 November 2014 / Published: 19 November 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Nuclear Reactor and Fuel Cycle Technologies)
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Abstract

Economic analysis and market simulation tools are used to evaluate uranium (U) supply shocks, sale or purchase of uranium stockpiles, or market effects of new uranium mines or enrichment technologies. This work expands on an existing U market model that couples the market for primary U from uranium mines with those of secondary uranium, e.g., depleted uranium (DU) upgrading or highly enriched uranium (HEU) down blending, and enrichment services. This model accounts for the interdependence between the primary U supply on the U market price, the economic characteristics of each individual U mine, sources of secondary supply, and the U enrichment market. This work defines a procedure for developing an aggregate supply curve for primary uranium from marginal cost curves for individual firms (Uranium mines). Under this model, market conditions drive individual mines’ startup and short- and long-term shutdown decisions. It is applied to the uranium industry for the period 2010–2030 in order to illustrate the evolution of the front end markets under conditions of moderate growth in demand for nuclear fuel. The approach is applicable not only to uranium mines but also other facilities and reactors within the nuclear economy that may be modeled as independent, decision-making entities inside a nuclear fuel cycle simulator. View Full-Text
Keywords: uranium supply; market modeling; nuclear fuel cycle economics uranium supply; market modeling; nuclear fuel cycle economics
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Auzans, A.; Schneider, E.A.; Flanagan, R.; Tkaczyk, A.H. A Mine-Based Uranium Market Clearing Model. Energies 2014, 7, 7673-7693.

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