Thursday, January 23, 2020

Problems Facing Breeder Reactors as a Future Energy Source Essay

Breeder Reactors: A Foreseeable Option? Abstract: Fission of nuclear particles has the potential to produce massive amounts of energy and electricity to help mankind. Breeder reactors bring forth modern technology at its finest; mankind is becoming more and more creative to make reactors which can be optimally efficient and cost-effective at the same time. By being able to harness plutonium-239 with a blanket of uranium and start chain reactions consistently, breeders seem to be a viable option to help produce electricity for a bigger population. However, maintenance and operation costs are big problems to deal with, and these are some of the ramifications that factors into the decision of realizing if breeders could potentially be our next alternative energy source. Introduction: Non-renewable resources such as fossil fuels have been used up by society on a daily basis and have forced the world to find a new, clean energy source. The rising price of oil and the constant emission of carbon dioxide are proof that in the future our lives will be much harder to live. One answer to this problem is nuclear power, which has shown its efficiency during the times of World War II but has not been used commercially due to the challenges of dealing with nuclear waste and proliferation. In today?s modern era, nuclear power has been used in liquid metal fast breeder reactors, reactors that use uranium-238 to produce plutonium-239. Historical Background: Nuclear energy was first achieved through Enrico Fermi?s experiment of nuclear fission where he and his team shot neutrons towards uranium atoms, which confirmed Albert Einstein?s theory of relativity that mass could be converted into energy. The first nuclear reactor was built by... ... 2008 . 11. "Plutonium for Everybody." Plutonium obtained from nuclear waste can be used. 28 July 2008 . 12. Gagnon, Steve, ed. "Jefferson Lab." It's Elemental. 28 July 2008 13. "JAEA R&D Review." Ideal Fuel Cladding Materials for Fast Breeder Reactor Irradiated at Highest Temperature in the World. 28 July 2008 http:// 14. "Plutonium End Game." Chapter 2: A Brief History of Commercial Plutonium. Jan. 2001. 28 July 2008 . 15. 16.

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