Introduction to the Nuclear Power Industry

  • Bahman Zohuri


Currently, about half of all nuclear power plants are located in the United States. There are many, different kinds of nuclear power plants, and we will discuss a few important designs in this text. A nuclear power plant harnesses the energy inside atoms themselves and converts this to electricity. All of us use this electricity. In Sect. 1.1 of this chapter, we show you the idea of the fission process and how it works. A nuclear power plant uses controlled nuclear fission. In this chapter, we will explore how a nuclear power plant operates and the manner in which nuclear reactions are controlled. There are several different designs for nuclear reactors. Most of them have the same basic function, but one’s implementation of this function separates it from another. There are several classification systems used to distinguish between reactor types. Below is a list of common reactor types and classification systems found throughout the world, and they are briefly explained below according to the three types of classification either (1) classified by moderator material, (2) classified by coolant material, or (3) classified by reaction types.


Next Generation Nuclear Plant (NGNP) Very High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) Supercritical Water-cooled Reactor (SCWR) Fuel Cycle Nuclear Energy Systems 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
  2. 2.
    B. L. Cohen “Breeder Reactors: A Renewable Energy Source,” American Journal of Physics, 51, 1 (Jan. 1983).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    A. Weinberg “The Second Fifty Years of Nuclear Fission,” Proc. Special Symposium: 50 Years of Nuclear Fission in Review, Ontario, Canada, June 5, 1989, Canadian Nuclear Society.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    N. Seko, “Aquaculture of Uranium in Seawater by a Fabric-Adsorbent Submerged System,” Nuclear Technology, 144, 274 (Nov. 2003).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    “Some Physics of Uranium,” available on the Internet at (December 2005).
  6. 6.
    W. H. Hannum, “The Technology of the Integral Fast Reactor and Its Associated Fuel Cycle,” Progress in Nuclear Energy, 31, 1 (1997).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
  8. 8.
  9. 9.
    World Nuclear Association website
  10. 10.
    IAEA Power Reactor Information System website
  11. 11.
  12. 12.
    Sustainable Nuclear Energy Technology Platform, Strategic Research Agenda, May 2009,
  13. 13.
    Nuclear Energy Outlook 2008, OECD/NEA Report No. 6348, 2008, Nuclear Energy Agency, Paris.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    2009 Update of the MIT 2003 Future of Nuclear Power, An Interdisciplinary MIT Study, 2003, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge USA, May 2009
  15. 15.
    Uranium 2007: Resources, Production and Demand. OECD Nuclear Energy Agency and the International Atomic Energy Agency, OECD 2008 NEA N 6345.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Proposal for a COUNCIL DIRECTIVE (EURATOM) setting up a Community framework for nuclear safety COM (2008) 790/3, November 2008Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION Legislative Acts and Other Instruments 10667/09, June 2009.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
  19. 19.
    Updated Emissions Projections, July 2006, DTI,
  20. 20.
    DTI: Energy White Paper, Meeting the Energy Challenge,
  21. 21.
  22. 22.
  23. 23.

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bahman Zohuri
    • 1
  1. 1.University of New MexicoGalaxy Advanced Engineering, Inc.AlbuquerqueUSA

Personalised recommendations