Nuclear Power

Current Status and Prospects

Authored by: H. Marcus Gail

Sustainability in the Mineral and Energy Sectors

Print publication date:  September  2016
Online publication date:  September  2016

Print ISBN: 9781498733021
eBook ISBN: 9781315369853
Adobe ISBN:


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Nuclear power presently accounts for about 12% of the electricity production around the world and is one of the major sources of low-carbon, reliable base load electricity production. As a result, active programs are underway in several countries around the world to build more nuclear power plants. However, a history that started with ties to nuclear weapons programs and includes several serious accidents, as well as concerns about waste disposal and other factors, have raised questions about nuclear power in some countries. As a result, other countries are closing operating nuclear power plants or curtailing plans to build new ones. New reactor design concepts are under development that may help address some of the concerns. This chapter addresses the major issues, current technologies, and advanced concepts under development.

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