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Biology Graphs: Nuclear Energy

This diagram is a simplified explanation of the internal workings of a nuclear power plant. Heavy development of nuclear power began in the late 1950s with the hopes that nuclear power would someday supply nearly all of the world's electricity. However, due to severe accidents like the major spill in Chernobyl, Ukraine, and due to high costs, public concern, and frequent malfunctions, the nuclear power experiment has, for the most part, been halted.
Nuclear power plants produce energy through a nuclear reaction called "fission", in which uranium atoms are split to create heat. This entire process takes place within the power plant, as seen in the diagram above.
The nuclear reaction heats water in the primary circuit to a very high temperature. The water is pumped to a heat exchanger, which transfers the heat to a secondary circuit. Water in the secondary circuit turns into high-pressure steam, which puts pressure on a turbine, setting it into motion. The turbine then turns the generator, producing electricity. The vase-shaped towers most people think of when they think of nuclear power plants (not pictured above) are cooling towers that alleviate the heat generated inside the plant.

General Questions

In your own words, describe what is happening in the diagram.

Based on the description about how a nuclear power plant works, in which direction, clockwise or counterclockwise, does the process flow in the plant?

Which of the following is an advantage of nuclear power?

C Roach

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