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The advantages and disadvantages of Nuclear power stations.

Last updated date: 18th Jun 2024
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Hint: The nuclear power plant is a thermal power station in which the heat source is a nuclear reactor. As it is typical of thermal power stations, heat is used to generate the steam that drives a steam turbine connected to a generator that produces the electricity.

Complete answer: The advantages of the nuclear power stations are as follows:
a. Low-cost energy: Although building nuclear power stations has a high initial cost, it is relatively cheap to produce energy from them and they have low operating costs.
b. Reliable: One of the biggest benefits of nuclear energy stations is that it is a reliable power generation source.
c. Zero-carbon emissions: Nuclear power reactors do not produce any carbon emissions. This is a very huge advantage over traditional sources of energy, like fossil fuels, which releases tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
d. Promising future energy supply: Nuclear fusion is the only grail of harnessing energy. If we can learn to control the atomic fusion, we could practically have unlimited energy.
e. High energy density: It is estimated that the amount of energy released in a nuclear fission reaction is ten million times greater than the amount released when burning fossil fuels.
Disadvantages of nuclear energy stations are as follows:
While there are many advantages to using nuclear energy, there are also many negative effects of nuclear energy. The following are the most important ones:
a. Environmental impact: Although nuclear power plants release zero carbon emissions, nuclear power still has a substantial impact on the environment, mainly through mining and water discharge.
b. Water intensive: Nuclear power stations require a lot of water to produce energy. In the United States once they consumed three hundred and twenty billion gallons of water to produce nuclear power. That is more water than what is used for coal processing.
c. Risk of nuclear accidents: Nuclear power plants have very strict safety measures in place. However, accidents can happen no matter how careful you are. A meltdown at a nuclear plant can have a catastrophic impact on the surrounding areas, which we know from the events like the Fukushima disaster, the Chernobyl, and the Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania.
d. Radioactive waste: Generating nuclear power does not emit harmful greenhouse gases in the air, however, it does create hazardous waste. The waste created by the nuclear power stations remains dangerously radioactive for thousands of years after it is created. Many issues arise when trying to figure out how to store this radioactive waste.
e. Non-renewable: A renewable energy resource is defined as a source of energy that is not depleted when it is used, or that can be replenished within the human lifetime. Solar power is an example of a renewable resource because as we turn the solar energy into usable electricity, we do not decrease the power of the sun.
Note: One of the major environmental concerns related to nuclear power is the creation of radioactive wastes such as the uranium mill tailings, the spent reactor fuel, and other radioactive wastes. These materials can remain radioactive and dangerous to human health for thousands of years.