In this part I will talk a bit about the types of radiation. In part 2, I will explain how a reactor works, and finally in part 3, discuss some of the effects of radiation on humans.Read More
The fission reactor uses a controlled nuclear fission process to produce thermal energy, which is then converted into electricity by boiling water. With the exception of the reactor core, a nuclear power plant is similar to any other power plant that relies on thermal energy. The difference is the means by which the thermal energy is produced.
Nuclear fuel is most commonly composed of compounds containing Uranium 235 which makes up less than 1% or uranium ore in natural abundance. Most Uranium is U -238 and we have seen in part 1 that this is radioactive and decays primarily by alpha emission.Read More
In this third part on nuclear radiation I want to mention some of the biological effects. Although many agree that no level of radiation is safe, it really comes down to a matter of chance. Since negative effects of radiation increase with increased exposure, we should do what we can to keep radiation around us to a minimum.Read More