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2013-04-05 16:19:37
2013-04-05 16:19:37

The uranium isotope that is actually useful (whether for a reactor, or for an atomic bomb) is U-235. Natural uranium contains only about 0.7% of this; the remainder is mainly U-238. Therefore, it must be enriched, to have a greater percentage of U-235.


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All power reactors are thermal reactors except few ones that are fast nuclear reactors.

Most nuclear reactors are thermal-neutron reactors. A few fast breeder reactors have been built, but not many.

Sintered pellets of uranium dioxide, with natural uranium or low enriched in 235U, are currently used as nuclear fuels to produce electric/thermal energy.

yes, thermal nuclear reactors are safer than fossil power plants, dams, solar power, and coal mining.

Its most common use is as moderator (slows neutrons to thermal velocity) in natural uranium reactors (e.g. Candu). Some of these reactors also use it as Primary Loop coolant.

Because only the isotope 235U is fissionable with thermal neutrons and also is good for nuclear weapons. This is because normal uranium in the Earth is 0.7 % 235U and 99.3 % 238U. The 235U needs to be enriched to 4 % or greater in order to be effective as a fissile material (fission with neutrons producing fission and more neutrons that can continue the reaction) reaction. Power plants run around 4 % to 5 %; but CANDU type reactors work with natural uranium. Weapons run +99 %. Small high capacity reactors, such as on a submarine, run around 20 %.

Thermal Breeder Reactors use moderators but Fast Breeder Reactors don't use moderator.

I. I. Gold'denblat has written: 'Calculaton of thermal stresses in nuclear reactors'

Either yellow uranium oxide (yellowcake) or metallic uranium in most reactors. In moderated thermal neutron reactors the uranium is usually enriched to 3% to 5% uranium-235 isotope, in unmoderated fast neutron reactors the uranium is enriched to 20% to 95% uranium-235 isotope. This uranium comes from mines (similar to coal or iron ore mines). What is mined is usually black uranium oxide ore. This ore is processed to make unenriched yellowcake (0.7% uranium-235) and shipped to the enrichment plant. Most enrichment plants process the yellowcake to make uranium hexafloride then run that through their system, producing both enriched uranium (product) and depleted uranium (waste). The enriched uranium hexafloride is then processed back to yellowcake and shipped to a finishing plant that uses it to make the required fuel assemblies.

Presumably you mean nuclear reactor coolant? This is the fluid that transfers the reactor thermal output to the steam raising units in a PWR, or to the turbine in a BWR, in which cases it is natural water. Gas cooled reactors can use carbon dioxide or helium, and CANDU reactors use heavy water.

Probably 100 years with thermal reactors , but a correct answer is impossible today.

Gilbert Melese has written: 'Thermal and flow design of helium-cooled reactors' -- subject(s): Design and construction, Gas cooled reactors, Helium

Uranium-238 has only one disadvantage: it is not a fissile material with thermal neutrons.But it is a fertile material good for some types of reactors or can be used in reactors with fast neutrons.

Plutonium is used as nuclear fuel for nuclear reactors. Plutonium isotopes (239, 241) are fissionable with thermal neutrons releasing an extremely great quantity of energy.

Uranium is used in nuclear power reactors to produce electricity or thermal energy.

Coal fired plants about 40 percent, nuclear reactors (PWR) about 33 percent

- uranium can be reused as nuclear fuel in thermal reactors only if the uranium-235 concentration is greater than 0,5 % - depleted uranium can by used in other types of nuclear reactors: with thorium cycle, fast reactors, reproductive nuclear reactors - depleted uranium can also be used in nonnuclear military applications or in civilian nonnuclear applications

The studies focused on uncontrolled and runaway reactions and designed to simulate the larger chemical reactors thermal behavior is called adiabatic calorimetry. It is used primarily for the study of thermal hazards.

Magma (molten rock that has gathered its thermal energy from below the surface of the earth) is, indeed, a natural resource, as is the thermal energy it has.

It slows neutrons from fast to thermal velocities, preventing capture by uranium-238 in fuel that is not highly enriched.

Plutonium is used in nuclear reactors as a nuclear fuel (as dioxide, carbide or MOX). The isotopes 239Pu and 241Pu are fissionable with thermal neutrons; other isotopes are fissionable only with fast neutrons.

Nuclear reactors use coolants (a main coolant) to keep form overheating, of course. They are also used totransfer the thermal energy (heat) generated by a reactor to the steam generating units.

One type (model) of reactor is the CANDU, or Canada (CAN) dueterium-uranium (DU)reactor. Ther are also differences between fusion and fission reactors, fast and thermal reactors (the differences bing in the speed of the neutrons used to initiate the chain reaction, usually fission), light or heavy water cooled or moderated reactors, and many other distinctions.

All thermal reactors, that is those using a moderator to slow down the fission neutrons, use the same reaction. In the US all commercial reactors (104 of them) are either PWR or BWR types.

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