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Nuclear Power - Research Paper Example

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Nuclear Power No: Date: University: Nuclear Power Power can be generated by utilizing various different methods. Burning the coal in the thermal power plant is a method to extract the energy from the coal while a natural gas based power plant extracts the energy from the natural gas…
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Nuclear Power Research Paper
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Download file to see previous pages In this reaction, the heavier and unstable nuclei breakup into corresponding smaller nuclei releasing a large amount of energy (nearly infinite amount of energy). The two corresponding nuclei split into other lighter nuclei again releasing large amount of energy. Thus the reaction continues until all the radioactive material releases energy. The energy released in the process is the thermal energy, which is then converted to the electrical energy by utilizing the procedure utilized in the thermal power plant. The process involves the generation of steam, heating the steam to 600 degrees and then utilizing the steam to run the turbine that runs the generator. The energy released in the nuclear reaction sometime become excessive than the required amount. In this way, there is a need to remove the excess energy from the reactor to prevent any reaction. To control the evolution of heat in the reaction several methods are adopted like utilizing the water as a coolant to dispose off the excess thermal energy, utilizing neutron moderator, molten salt or liquid metal. The most common method is to utilize the water while neutron moderator that slows the reaction down is also utilized. Graphite is a type of neutron moderator that is mostly used in the nuclear reactor. Cooling towers construction method is utilized for the power plants that are far from the shores. A nuclear power plant has seven major components. The most important is the nuclear fuel that is mostly Uranium. The second important component is the moderator that slows the reaction. Mostly heavy water and graphite are utilized to work as moderator. Control rods are also important component that absorb the neutrons and control the thermodynamics of the reactor. Elements such as cadmium, hafnium or born can be utilized in the control rods. Coolant is also an important factor that constantly maintains the thermal energy of the reactor. A liquid (mostly water) or a gas circulates through the core to remove the excess heat from the reactor. Pressure vessel or pressure tubes are also important component of the nuclear power plant. Reinforced steel is utilized in the component to resist the pressure of steam, hold the fuel and convey the coolant and moderator to the nuclear power plant. Steam generator is utilized in the Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) where a part of cooling water is converted to steam to run the turbine. The cooling system is separated from the primary core compartment (World-Nuclear. Association, 2012). Containment is the structure around the reactor core that protects the reactor from outer environment and outer environment from the reactor. There are many advantage and disadvantages of the nuclear power. The most important benefit of the nuclear power is that the nuclear power is free from the green house gas emissions. Another advantage of the nuclear power is that it is the most concentrated form of power and a kilogram of nuclear fuel yields as much power as a ton of coal, thus minimize the solid wastes. Nuclear power is the type of power that is best capable of providing the base load (Moens, 2012). However, the major disadvantage of the nuclear power is that it has the largest capital cost that any other power generation system would have, which rises the per kilowatt cost of the power. Another disadvantage is that the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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