Nuclear Waste Is The Substance That Nuclear Fuel Essays

703 Words Oct 7th, 2015 3 Pages
Nuclear waste is the substance that nuclear fuel becomes after it has been used in a reactor. Although the metal rods appear unchanged after their use, the material inside has changed greatly. Before it was used to produce power, the fuel mainly consisted of uranium. In order to create heat energy in the reactor, U235 undergoes fission. Fission is a nuclear reaction in which the nucleus of an atom splits into smaller parts. As a result of this, there is a chain reaction which creates heat. The control rods control the fission rate and the temperature. In the steam generator, the heat and cooling water create pressured steam which moves the turbine. The turbine creates energy that goes into a generator which gives off electricity. The water from the turbine is able to become usable since it gets cooled. Once a reactor reaches its lifetime, it becomes spent fuel and is treated as waste. Most countries bury the spent fuel or reuse it. In the U.S., we haven’t decided what to do with the spent fuel so most of the spent fuel rods are stored in temporary storage pools. In the future, the United States plans to bury the waste in the Yucca Mountains which are located in Nevada. This would be a suitable place since it is not close to humans or the environment. For the first part of the lab we had to go on Blackboard and open the “Spent Fuel” document. We had to go to Appendix III which had some text and a chart about how much spent fuel has been accumulated by each state. The…

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