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Nuclear Energy


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Nuclear Energy

  1. 1. Nuclear Energy By: Mihnea Radulescu
  2. 2. What is Nuclear Energy? Nuclear power, or nuclear energy, is the use of exothermic nuclear processes, to generate useful heat and electricity. The term includes nuclear fission, nuclear decay and nuclear fusion. Presently the nuclear fission of elements in the actinide series of the periodic table produce the vast majority of nuclear energy in the direct service of humankind, with nuclear decay processes, primarily in the form of geothermal energy, and radioisotope thermoelectric generators, in niche uses making up the rest. Source:Wikipedia
  3. 3. How much energy does it produces for the humankind? • In 2011, the "average" nuclear power plant in the United States generated about 12.2 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh). There were 65 nuclear power plants with 104 operating nuclear reactors that generated a total of 790 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh), or slightly more than 19% of the nation's electricity. • Thirty-six of those plants have two or more reactors. The Palo Verde plant in Arizona has three reactors with the largest combined generating capacity of about 3,937 Megawatts (MW). Fort Calhoun in Nebraska had the smallest capacity with a single reactor at 478 Megawatts (MW). • The average plant capacity factor was about 89% in 2011. Source:
  4. 4. Cernavoda Power Plant • The Nuclear Power Plant in Cernavodă (Romanian: Centrala Nucleară de la Cernavodă) is a nuclear power plant in Romania. It produces around 20% of the country's electricity. It uses CANDU reactor technology from AECL, using heavy water produced at Drobeta-Turnu Severin as its neutron moderator and water from the Danube – Black Sea Canal for cooling. • By using nuclear power, Romania is able to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by over 10 million tonnes each year. • The power plant was designed in Canada by Atomic Energy of Canada Limited in the 1980s, ad was contracted during the Communist era. The initial plan was to build five units. Units 1 and 2 are currently operational. Three more partially completed CANDU reactors exist on the same site, part of a project discontinued at the fall of Ceauşescu regime. Units 3 and 4 are expected to be completed in 2014 and 2015 respectively. Source: Wikipedia
  5. 5. Chernobyl • The Chernobyl disaster was a catastrophic nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine (then officially the Ukrainian SSR), which was under the direct jurisdiction of the central authorities of the Soviet Union. An explosion and fire released large quantities of radioactive particles into the atmosphere, which spread over much of the western USSR and Europe. • The Chernobyl disaster is widely considered to have been the worst nuclear power plant accident in history, and is one of only two classified as a level 7 event (the maximum classification) on the International Nuclear Event Scale (the other being the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011). The battle to contain the contamination and avert a greater catastrophe ultimately involved over 500,000 workers and cost an estimated 18 billion rubles. The official Soviet casualty count of 31 deaths has been disputed, and long-term effects such as cancers and deformities are still being accounted for. Source: Wikipedia
  6. 6. Facts About Nuclear Energy • • • • • • • • • • Nuclear energy comes from uranium, a nonrenewable resource that must be mined. Every 18 to 24 months, a power plant must shut down to remove its spent uranium fuel, which has become radioactive waste. 13 percent of the world’s electricity comes from nuclear power plants that emit little to no greenhouse gases. Nuclear energy is being used in more than 30 countries around the world, and even powers Mars rovers. Nuclear power facilities can produce energy at a 91 percent efficiency rate 24/7, while maintaining the method with the lowest emissions. More than 70 percent of America’s emission-free power comes from nuclear energy sources. 1 in 5 households and business in the U.S. are electrically powered by nuclear energy. United States power plants produce 2,000 metric tons of radioactive waste every year. The building of new nuclear facilities creates between 1,400 and 3,500 jobs for construction workers, and after the facility is built maintains 400 to 700 permanent positions paying roughly 36 to 44 percent more than the average salary of the surrounding area. American nuclear energy facilities are the highest regulated plants in the world, subject to more scrutinous observations and regulations. Source:
  7. 7. Nagasaki & Hiroshima • • • • • The atomic bombings of the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan were conducted by the United States during the final stages of World War II in 1945. The two events are the only use of nuclear weapons in war to date. Following a firebombing campaign that destroyed many Japanese cities, the Allies prepared for a costly invasion of Japan. The war in Europe ended when Nazi Germany signed its instrument of surrender on May 8, 1945, but the Pacific War continued. Together with the United Kingdom and the Republic of China, the United States called on Japan to surrender in the Potsdam Declaration on July 26, 1945, threatening "prompt and utter destruction". The Japanese government ignored this ultimatum. By August 1945, the Allied Manhattan Project had developed and tested atomic bombs, and the United States Army Air Forces 509th Composite Group was equipped with Silverplate Boeing B-29 Superfortress that could deliver them from Tinian in the Mariana Islands. A Little Boy atomic bomb was dropped on the city of Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, followed by a Fat Man bomb on the city of Nagasaki on August 9. Within the first two to four months of the bombings, the acute effects killed 90,000–166,000 people in Hiroshima and 60,000–80,000 in Nagasaki, with roughly half of the deaths in each city occurring on the first day. During the following months, large numbers died from the effect of burns, radiation sickness, and other injuries, compounded by illness. In both cities, most of the dead were civilians, although Hiroshima had a sizeable garrison. On August 15, six days after the bombing of Nagasaki, Japan announced its surrender to the Allies, signing the Instrument of Surrender on September 2, officially ending World War II. The bombings' role in Japan's surrender and their ethical justification are still debated. Nagasaki Bombing Video (click on link) Source: Wikipedia