This explanation uses Uranium - 235, the atom most commonly used in nuclear reactors. The Uranium atom has many protons, thus making it unstable. Since the nucleus of the atom is so unstable it wants to split itself apart, causing a spontaneous fission. When the nuclei of a Uranium atom splits apart, it splits into two atoms. Commonly the nucleus splits into Barium and Krypton; however, it can split into any two atoms as long as the number of protons equals the original amount of the protons found in the Uranium.
fragments" as well as less massive particles as the Neutrons). In the Nuclear Reactors this splitting is induced by the interaction of a neutron with a fissionable nucleus. Under suitable conditions, a "chain" reaction of fission in which events may be sustained. The energy released from the fission reactions provide heat, part of which is ultimately converted into electricity. In the present day Nuclear power plants, this heat is removed from the Nuclear fuel by water that is pumped past rods containing fuel.
These isotopes are highly radioactive. The isotope catches the fast moving neutrons created by the splitting atoms, it repels the slower moving protons and electrons, then gathers the neutrons and pulls them inward. While all these atoms are flying about they smash together then split many of many times, this is when the reactor grabs and pulls in the frictional energy to be processed into electrical watts. This usually causes heat or thermal energy, this must be removed by some kind of a coolant. Most power plants use water or another type of liquid based formula.
Heat is produced in a nuclear reactor when neutrons strike Uranium atoms causing them to fission in a continuous chain reaction. Control elements, which are made of materials that absorb neutrons, are placed among the fuel assemblies. When the control elements, or control rods as they are often called, are pulled out of the core, more neutrons are available and the chain reaction speeds up, producing more heat. When they are inserted into the core, more neutrons are absorbed, and the chain reaction slows or stops, reducing the heat. Reactors can be used for research or for power production.
These facilities are: impounded, diversion, and pumped storage. Some of these facilities use dams and some don’t. Plants range from small systems, for a house or whole village, to big projects creating electricity for all kinds of utilities. The impoundment facility is the most seen type of hydropower plant. This facility is a large hydropower system that uses a dam to store water in a reservoir.
A few chiliads of these fuel assemblies are grouped together and settled into a nuclear reactor. Nuclear fission commences as a neutron is thrown into the reactor. The neutron strikes an atom of U235. This releases heat, neutrons, tin, and molybdenum. The newly released neutrons strike more atoms of U235, thus creating a chain reaction.
There are two different kinds of nuclear reactor fission and fusion reactors. “Fission is a nuclear reactor in which an atomic nucleus splits normally in to two comparably sized pieces”. This causes the release of massive amounts of energy in the form of ... ... middle of paper ... ...ar.org/info/inf06.html University of Wisconsin. (n.d.). Nuclear energy.
In 1789, Uranium was discovered by a German chemist. 149 years later in 1939, a German scientist by the name of Otto Hahn along, with his assistant Fritz Strassmann, discovered nuclear fission. Nuclear fission releases massive amounts of energy. But not only does it release massive amounts of energy, Nuclear fission will also release additional neutrons which can then produce fission in other uranium nuclei. Which could then turn into a self sufficient chain reaction which can produce massive amounts of energy.
Enriched uranium is used because when it breaks down in nature it heats Earth’s crust. In nuclear power plants enriched uranium heats water to create steam. Power plants create energy by splitting the nuclei inside each granule of uranium. This process is called nuclear fission (How does energy work, 2013). Nuclear energy is sometimes considered a renewable energy source.
According to Sandra Alters, nuclear reactors work like this: Fuel rods, made of zirconium, with pellets of fissionable fuel (uranium in the US) are assembled into bundles in the core of the reactor. They are surrounded by control rods, made of iron, cadmium, indium or silver, which absorb or capture neutrons to slow the reaction. Neutron moderation is also important because neutrons have to be slowed so that the atomic nucleus can capture them. By the process of fission, or splitting of the uranium nucleus into smaller fragments by bombarding with neutrons, heat is produced. In a Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) this heat circulates in a pool of radioactive water, which transfers its heat to a second pool of water that produces steam, which runs through a turbine and turns the generator, turning mechanical energy into electrical energy.