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Nuclear Energy: The Fukushima Daiichi Plant
Transcript of Nuclear Energy: The Fukushima Daiichi Plant
The Fukushima Daiichi Plant
What Is Nuclear Energy?
Fallout of the Disaster
Energy created by nuclear fission (splitting unstable uranium atoms and using the heat generated from that process)
Heat from fission turns water to steam, allowing it to turn the turbines of a generator
"Average" nuclear power plant in the US generated about 11.8 billion kWh in 2012 (EIA, "How Much Electricity").
On March 11th, 2011, a 9.0 earthquake struck off the coast of Japan, triggering a tsunami that hit the coast of Fukushima and other areas
Damage sustained by the Fukushima Daiichi plant included failure of the cooling systems, subsequent overheating of the nuclear cores and melting of the fuel rods
Pressurized H2 gas in the outer containment buildings of first 3 reactors led to explosions that exposed radioactive material and released large amounts of radiation to the atmosphere
Continued use of nuclear power in debate
- Safety measures of nuclear plants (specifically Fukushima) in review
- Affected crops in Japan
- Farmers won't eat crops themselves and feel guilty about selling them to population
- Japanese planted sunflowers around damaged plant to absorb radiation
- Significant quantities of radiation released
- Widespread (poisoned fish, heightened radiation levels in Missouri snow)
- Due to seawater leak inside nuclear facility
- At least 14 percent of world's power (excluding fossil fuels)
- FDA-approved food irradiation (pest control)
- Medical scans (bone cancer and infections)
- Water desalination (steam-based process)
Image credit: Merriam-Webster Visual Dictionary Online
Image credits: www.two-views.com
Image credits: Encyclopedia Britannica
Casianna Chu and Nikki Sakhamuri
Image Credit: ASR Blog
Image Credits: The Telegraph
1896 - Physicist Henri Becquerel discovers radioactivity
1898 - Chemists Pierre and Marie Curie discover uranium ore
1932 - James Chadwick discovers neutrons
1934 - Leo Szilard comes up
with idea of nuclear chain reaction and takes first license on nuclear energy production
1942 - construction and start-up of the first critical assembly by American physicist Robert Moon and Italian physicist Enrico Fermi
1986 - Chernobyl Power Plant disaster in Ukraine
1979 - Three Mile Island partial reactor meltdown in Pennsylvania
2011 - Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident caused by earthquake and tsunami
Image Credits: Enformable
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