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Asked in Nuclear Energy, Nuclear Reactors
If the control rods in a nuclear reactor are removed would the condition be supercritical or subcritical?
If the control rods in a nuclear reactor were somehow to be instantly "jerked" out of the reactor, the reactor would go supercritical. If they were pulled at a normal rate and all of the control rods were pulled out, the reactor would start up and heat up and would end up running far too hot. Any one of several safety systems would shut the reactor down before this could happen. If the safety systems were disabled, the reactor would overheat and a meltdown may occur.
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What radioactive elements are used in doing nuclear fission?
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What device in a nuclear power plant creates nuclear energy?
The origin of the energy is the reactor core. Control rods are pulled out of the core to start the reactor, and a controlled chain reaction begins and is maintained. Neutrons released in fissions create other fissions to keep the chain alive. The fissions release energy, much of which is heat energy. The heat is transferred out of the core into the reactor coolant. The coolant transfers the heat into steam generators, and the heat creates steam which is then piped to steam turbines. The turbines drive generators to create electricity, which is then put on the power grid. A link is provided to an article on the nuclear reactor core posted by our friends at Wikipedia, where knowledge is free. BIG PANTS