# Учебно-методическое пособие по чтению специальной литературы для студентов 1 курса физического факультета. Дроздова И.В - 21 стр.

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• ## Иностранный язык

21
Problems of Waste Disposal
Atomic power plants have become operational in many countries of the world. They
could have become an inexhaustible source of electric power but for the danger they
might cause to the environment.
To understand why people object to building new atomic power plants it is necessary
to get to know the process of converting nuclear energy into electrical one.
All nuclear reactors of atomic power plants work by splitting uranium atoms and
releasing energy in the form of heat. The heat is then used to boil water and produce
steam which is directed onto turbine blades to drive the turbines and electric
generators.
The dangerous part of the process is the release of heat as a result of nuclear fission.
The amount of heat is so great that unless the reactor is cooled properly by constantly
circulating water, the fuel rods in the active reactor zone can melt into uncontrollable
And despite the fact that the reactors are equipped with multiple sets of water pipes
and reserve cooling system various faults occur which endanger the entire system.
A number of accidents in the course of decades of atomic power plants operation, the
most disastrous being the Chernobyl catastrophe, required special measures to make
them safer and that, no doubt, will make electricity more expensive.
Today designers have found ways to build reactors that are much safer than those
now in operation. Instead of one huge reactor with many uranium rods they propose
to construct a series of four small-scale separate reactors that use fuel in such small
quantities that it cant melt down under any circumstances. And the fuel itself will be
introduced into the reactor in the form of comparatively small grains encapsulated in
ceramic spheres that can withstand temperatures as high as 1820°C. (The reactor fuel
in this case will never reach temperature higher than 1650°C).
The reactor will be cooled by helium, the cooling system being easier to operate.
Besides, for greater safety purposes all the reactors would be buried belowground.
The only drawback of the proposed design is the comparatively lower electrical
output.
The problem that has not been solved by the new proposal is how to get rid of the
used up nuclear fuel.
                                           21

Problems of Waste Disposal

Atomic power plants have become operational in many countries of the world. They
could have become an inexhaustible source of electric power but for the danger they
might cause to the environment.

To understand why people object to building new atomic power plants it is necessary
to get to know the process of converting nuclear energy into electrical one.

All nuclear reactors of atomic power plants work by splitting uranium atoms and
releasing energy in the form of heat. The heat is then used to boil water and produce
steam which is directed onto turbine blades to drive the turbines and electric
generators.

The dangerous part of the process is the release of heat as a result of nuclear fission.
The amount of heat is so great that unless the reactor is cooled properly by constantly
circulating water, the fuel rods in the active reactor zone can melt into uncontrollable

And despite the fact that the reactors are equipped with multiple sets of water pipes
and reserve cooling system various faults occur which endanger the entire system.

A number of accidents in the course of decades of atomic power plants operation, the
most disastrous being the Chernobyl catastrophe, required special measures to make
them safer and that, no doubt, will make electricity more expensive.

Today designers have found ways to build reactors that are much safer than those
now in operation. Instead of one huge reactor with many uranium rods they propose
to construct a series of four small-scale separate reactors that use fuel in such small
quantities that it can’t melt down under any circumstances. And the fuel itself will be
introduced into the reactor in the form of comparatively small grains encapsulated in
ceramic spheres that can withstand temperatures as high as 1820°C. (The reactor fuel
in this case will never reach temperature higher than 1650°C).

The reactor will be cooled by helium, the cooling system being easier to operate.
Besides, for greater safety purposes all the reactors would be buried belowground.

The only drawback of the proposed design is the comparatively lower electrical
output.

The problem that has not been solved by the new proposal is how to get rid of the
used up nuclear fuel.