I am launching a survey to gain your opinions on the proposal put forward by Bassetlaw District Council for sites in Bassetlaw to be considered as the location for a new nuclear power plant. This is part of the 'STEP' initiative which would see a plant using the new process of nuclear fusion.
What's the difference?
A lot of you may be wondering what is 'Nuclear Fusion' or what is 'Nuclear Power' full stop. To help you I have put the definitions for the process below:
Nuclear Fission [Traditional] - Fission occurs when a neutron slams into a larger atom, forcing it to excite and spilt into two smaller atoms—also known as fission products. Additional neutrons are also released that can initiate a chain reaction.
When each atom splits, a tremendous amount of energy is released.
Uranium and plutonium are most commonly used for fission reactions in nuclear power reactors because they are easy to initiate and control.
The energy released by fission in these reactors heats water into steam. The steam is used to spin a turbine to produce carbon-free electricity.
Nuclear Fusion - Fusion occurs when two atoms slam together to form a heavier atom, like when two hydrogen atoms fuse to form one helium atom.
This is the same process that powers the sun and creates huge amounts of energy—several times greater than fission. It also doesn’t produce highly radioactive fission products.
Fusion reactions are being studied by scientists, but are difficult to sustain for long periods of time because of the tremendous amount of pressure and temperature needed to join the nuclei together.