Nuclear Power Plant Isar, Germany

Spent nuclear fuel pool

Turbine of a nuclear plant

Nuclear Energy

Nuclear energy is mainly used to produce electrical energy

Nuclear energy is the energy contained in the nucleus of atoms. Nuclear energy is used in multiple applications, but the best known application is the generation of electricity.

The term nuclear energy is often used to refer to the electrical energy generated by nuclear power plants.

One of the ways of harnessing nuclear energy is to obtain energy in the form of heat from the bonds that hold the nucleus of the atom together.

There are basically two techniques for harnessing nuclear energy.

Nuclear power plants are the installations responsible for obtaining electrical energy from nuclear reactions. These facilities contain, among many other elements, a nuclear reactor where nuclear reactions will be generated. Nuclear reactions generate heat energy that is used to drive turbines and generate electricity from the turbines.

All installed nuclear power plants use nuclear fission to function. Nuclear fusion, for now, is only in the experimental phase.

Nuclear energy content

This website is a general information site on nuclear energy. The contents are focused on schematically explaining what nuclear energy is and how a nuclear power plant works.

To understand it better, it is important to understand how an atom is formed. An atom is the smallest part that an element can be found. The atom is formed by a nucleus (composed in turn of neutrons and protons) and a cortex ( electrons).

We do not intend to enter into technical complexity calculations, sizing or any other engineering work.

Advantages and disadvantages of nuclear energy

The use of nuclear energy has certain advantages and disadvantages.

The main advantage is the possibility of generating a large amount of electricity at a relatively low cost with a small amount of nuclear fuel.

On the other hand, nuclear power is not very popular due to the difficulty of managing nuclear waste and the possibility of nuclear accidents.

In spite of the high security measures throughout the history of nuclear energy, there have been certain incidents and nuclear accidents. We will analyze how nuclear accidents are classified using the INES scale, and review the causes and consequences of the most important accidents in history ( Chernobyl, Fukushima ...).


Published: December 10, 2009
Last review: September 14, 2018