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Nuclear power stations based on fission of uranium - Essay Example

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Nuclear Power Stations Based on Fission of Uranium [Name] [University] Nuclear Power Stations Based on Fission of Uranium Introduction This paper aims to discuss the nuclear power stations specifically based on fission Reaction using uranium. In the current era electricity generation through nuclear power has become dominant due to the ever increasing demand for power supply (Nuclear Fission, 2013)…
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Nuclear power stations based on fission of uranium
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Download file to see previous pages The process of splitting the nuclei is known as fission reaction which distinguishes nuclear power stations from ordinary power generators. Uranium is a non-renewable resource which means that once all the uranium present inside the earth’s crust is used then it cannot be reproduced. Nuclear fission is basically a chain reaction i.e. once the chemical composition of uranium nuclei starts to break then reaction continues until all the uranium material is used by the reactors (Nuclear Fission, 2013). This chain reaction is built and processed under high supervision because if the reaction goes out of control then it will turn in to a nuclear bomb. Hence the primary responsibility of power stations is to keep the process under control in order to avoid destructive consequences. The overall process of splitting the nuclei and converting them into small parts is also known as radioactive decay. Nuclear power stations play a vital role in production of heat and energy which are beneficial to generate electricity on comparatively larger scale. However, the overall process of fission reactions has numerous environmental hazards in terms of waste products which are significantly harmful for future human generations. Moreover, protecting the nuclear plant incurs huge costs while still bring a threat of nuclear explosion (Nuclear Fission, 2013). Physical Principles of Power Generation The nuclear fission reaction starts with the mere activity of neutrons. When a neutron is fused with another heavy nucleus i.e. Uranium-235, then the uranium nucleus captures the neutron in order to form a compound nucleus (Physics of Uranium and Nuclear Energy, 2012). That is: When Uranium-235 is kept as a thermal reactor in the nuclear plant then collision with the new neutron increases the overall energy of the reactor. Hence the total energy is equally distributed among 236 neutrons and protons which make the nucleus comparatively unstable. Consequently the heavy nucleus is broken down into smaller nuclei while producing huge amount of energy. Around 85% of the released energy is categorized as kinetic energy which is then converted in to heat. Nuclear Fission Reaction also produces certain by-products including Barium (Ba), Strontium (Sr), Caesium (Cs), Krypton (Kr), Xenon (Xe) etc. Approximately 6% heat is produced due to the formation of these fission by-products (Physics of Uranium and Nuclear Energy, 2012). The following equation explains the formation of Barium during the Nuclear Fission Reaction. With the split of nucleus two or three other neutrons are produced which again fuse with the heavy nucleus of uranium while splitting the nuclei and producing immense energy. Hence in this way the chain reaction is carried in the nuclear reactor. As more and more neutrons are produced more energy is generated and therefore the reaction is restricted to take place under high observation and controlled equipment (Physics of Uranium and Nuclear Energy, 2012). Following is the Graphic Representation of the Nuclear Reaction Using Uranium Controlling Mechanism of Nuclear Fission Reaction As discussed above that the uncontrollable nuclear fission can turn into a nuclear bomb therefore it is highly significant to make extensive security measures so as to control the activity of neut ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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