Nuclear Energy is one of the most controversial types of energy in today’s world, because of its certain advantages and disadvantages. Experts are of the view that nuclear source of energy can bring some of the biggest developments in the world. Analysing and understanding the pros and cons of this source of energy can help towards making an informed decision about this energy utilities.
Nuclear Energy Power Source: Nuclear Energy is often used to produce electricity that is in the nucleus of an atom. The energy obtained from this can be further divided into two types: nuclear fission and Nuclear Fusion. Although the production of nuclear energy is mostly for generating electricity, there are other important uses of nuclear energy in other sectors, such as environmental, wartime (atomic bomb production) and medicine.
Advantages of Nuclear Energy:
Reliability: When a nuclear power plant is functioning properly and smoothly, it can produce electricity for continuous 540 days without any interruption. The functioning of the power plant is also not dependent on the weather conditions or the foreign supplies, which makes it as a reliable source of energy from other sources of energy.
Less Expensive: A very small amount of uranium is required to produce the same amount of energy produced from other sources such as coal or oil. This actually lowers the cost involved in the production of energy. Uranium is also a less expensive source to transport and procure, which lowers the cost further.
No Greenhouse Gases Production: Although, nuclear power production does have some emissions it does not emit any greenhouse gases. No production of greenhouse gases is actually attracting the attention of environmental experts.
Disadvantages Of Nuclear Power:
One of the reasons that nuclear energy fails to be the prime source of energy in the world, is because of the many disadvantages that it brings along with its production.
It Promotes Water Pollution: It is known that the nuclear fission chambers are cooled by the use of water, in processes like boiling water reactors (BWR’s) and pressurized water reactors (PWR’s). In the process of boiling water reactor, water runs through the reactor core and any type of leakage of fuel can result in contamination of the water, as it can get transported in the rest of the system. While, in PWR’s, cold water enters the primary pipe and the secondary pipe removes the heated water away, so that the coolant does not come in contact with the reactor.
Raw Material: The main source of nuclear energy is Uranium and it is a naturally unstable element. This means that there is a requirement to take special precautions during the process of mining, storing and transporting the uranium, as well as the storing of waste product so as to prevent the production of any harmful level of radiations.
Waste Production: The finishing of uranium splitting, results in the production of several radioactive by-products, which needs to be removed. Any storage or leakage of these harmful by-products could lead to containment failures and disastrous results.
Leakage: When a nuclear power plant is not maintained properly, it can have structural flaws and resulting in this the nuclear reactor could leak harmful radiations to the environment during the process of regular use. If a containment field is ruptured, it can lead to leakage of radiation that could be catastrophic to nature and environment.
While there are so many disadvantages of nuclear gas, still if it used with proper planning and strategy, this can prove to be beneficial to the environment and the world.