There are two forms of nuclear energy. Nuclear fission which involves the splitting up of a nucleus to form lighter elements, this occurs in the core of the earth. Nuclear fusion which occurs when smaller atoms combine to make larger ones as occurs in the sun. Nuclear fission has been with us since WW2, nuclear fusion has only been developed for military purposes. There are ongoing projects to develop nuclear fusion using magnetic fields, but unfortunately they have not developed high enough temperatures and pressures to make the process work.
Above - applications of nuclear power have been dreamed of for many years.
Not very practical though!
1.Capital costs too expensive.
3 Maintenance (ask anyone who has been or is involved in maintaining a nuclear sub).
4 Much too heavy, particularly when you consider the shielding problems.
5 Much too bulky, shielding need for reactor, primary and secondary cooling curcuits.
6 Control very difficult in a haulage environment where the power output may vary rapidly and widely.
7 How do you get rid of delayed fission and decay energy? (i.e. you can't shut down the energy output completely once the reactor has gone critical).
8 Crash protection?
Generating electricity by nuclear power and then having electric trains is more realistic.
Nuclear power has received a lot of bad press but the statistics do not support this image. More people are killed generating electricity from coal than nuclear power, even when you factor the Chernobyl accident in.
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