Free «Energy Resources» UK Essay Paper
According to Chouhan (2005), energy resources are running low in the entire world. Nuclear energy is the next option, which can provide effective energy to the universe. In fact, nuclear energy is the most effective, cheapest, cleanest and safest type of energy. However, nuclear wastes carry the greatest risk that can destroy the planet. Power plants and nuclear weapons release harmful radiations, which have an extremely negative effect on the present and the future of the planet Earth. Nuclear waste involves both physics and politics. The physics deals with nuclear production as uranium 235 undergoes nuclear fission and combines with neutrons to produce energy. However, the physics is prone to mechanical and electrical failure, which releases nuclear waste accidently. On the other hand, politics have a great influence on the nuclear waste. Some countries produce nuclear weapons for political power. Using nuclear weapons releases radioactive elements, which harm living things and the environment. The scientific aspects of it are still up for debate, since there is a huge political influence on the issue. Some nations have failed to stop manufacturing nuclear weapons despite the many agreements and conferences to curb them. Nuclear power plants should be designed to function safely. Matters of handling nuclear wastes have to be addressed to ensure the plants are not vulnerable to releasing radiation elements. Additionally, nuclear waste matters should be based on engineering and scientific knowledge but not on politics (Chouhan, 2005).
Eckerman (2001) indicates that reprocessing refers to a series of chemical functions, which separate uranium and plutonium from the other nuclear waste of the nuclear power reactors. This process aims at reusing spent fuel to fuel the eactors. Reprocessing ensures more than ninety seven percent of the nuclear waste is recycled and reused. In case the waste is not reprocessed, it is stored in the site to be reprocessed later. This reduces the chances of releasing it to the environment. Reprocessing a single tone of fuel is capable of saving one hundred thousand barrels of oil. Additionally, it helps preserve uranium supplies in the world. However, the separated plutonium can also be used in making nuclear weapon. The process is also capable of increasing cancer in the surroundings. The process is very expensive and unsafe. It can increase the rate of terrorism attacks since terrorists will easily acquire nuclear weapons. Reprocessing is affected by both scientific and political spheres. Scientifically, the advantages and disadvantages are considered for the benefit of the entire universe. However, political influences are based on ideological and personal interest revolving around nuclear power (Eckerman, 2001).
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The Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor (TFTR) was built in America, between1982 and 1997 and existed at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL). In 1993, the TFTR was the first magnetic fusion tool that performed widespread experiments using plasmas consisting D-T. In 1994, the device produced about 10.7MW fusion power which was controlled. The Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor set other records such as achieving plasma temperature of five hundred and ten million degrees Celsius in 1995. Nevertheless, it failed to meet break-even point of the fusion energy. In fusion power, waste issues are not a problem, because fusion power does not produce long lasting radioactive products. Additionally, the unburned gases produced by the fusion path are treated on the site. Fusion produces medium-term and short-term radioactive wastes as a result of activation of structural materials (Fortun, 2001).
Eckerman (2001) mentions the muon fusion-catalyzed reactors, where muon is generated directly through the particle accelerators that are focused into the fusion fuel tank. Muon can insert quite close propinquity to the atomic nucleus fusion fuel and un-screening fuel atomicnuclei from the nuclei’s entomb-repulsive features as an outcome of the nuclei partaking an electrical responsibility of a similar sign.
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Muon catalyzed fusion can be possible within an approximate room temperature and compactness of fusion fuel portions. Therefore, it is theoretically a legitimate method referred to as a cold fusion. Theoretically, muons with a lifetimerest mean of around 2.2 microseconds can catalyze around one hundred nuclear fusions before decaying. Such technology can require strict laws, since the macroscopic mass quantity release of such poisonous baryons and mesons can gradually eat the atmosphere and the oceans. Moreover, it can set the atmosphere of the Earth and its oceans or other aqueous planets to the nuclear fire. At best, the planet can soon be brought to a sweltering temperature; at worst, the whole planet can be ionized into an explosion that can eat away the planet’s atmosphere and oceans at a flash. Therefore, all the three isotopes of beryllium mentioned above are somehow formulated by the mechanisms of cold fusion decay exothermically. Paradoxically, beryllium-8 might theoretically be formulated from double helium-4 nuclei decayed into dual helium-4 nuclei quite exothermically. A weird concept can entail double helium-4 nuclei actually fused to make one beryllium-8 nucleus. Less thermal energy levels or only room temperature are needed in the batch fusion fuel (Eckerman, 2001).
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