Articles on Future of Nuclear series

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You need to take a wider view to work out the true greenhouse emissions from nuclear power. Teollisuuden Voima Oy/Wikimedia Commons

Is nuclear power zero-emission? No, but it isn’t high-emission either

Nuclear power isn't 'zero-emission', as many proponents claim. Factor in uranium mining, power plant construction, and other factors and it has similar emissions to wind power. But that's still lower than fossil fuels.
Reactor pressure vessel during construction of Shippingport Atomic Power Station in Pennsylvania, 1956. U.S. Department of Energy, Naval Reactors Program

How nuclear power-generating reactors have evolved since their birth in the 1950s

The basics of fission physics have stayed the same over the decades. But power-generating reactor designs have evolved, turning to new coolants, recycled fuel and other innovations.
Still chugging: the operation of existing nuclear plants in the US is being extended far beyond their expected life. James Marvin Phelps/flickr

The case for nuclear power – despite the risks

We cannot eliminate the inherent risks of nuclear power but it is rigorously monitored and has a proven performance of delivering zero-carbon electricity.
The Fukushima disaster was a dark chapter for nuclear power - but high-profile accidents are far from the only downside. EPA/KIMIMASA MAYAMA/AAP

Accidents, waste and weapons: nuclear power isn’t worth the risks

Is nuclear power worth it? No, says Mark Diesendorf – it's never been a major world energy force, it has caused huge accidents, and its greenhouse emissions are higher than many people realise.
Kudankulam is one of seven new nuclear plants being built in India. IAEA

Where will nuclear power plants of the future be built?

Asia and Eastern Europe are leading the way, but construction times for new projects are getting longer, and Europe's dominant energy player, Germany, is turning its back on nuclear.
A nuclear-capable Pakistani missile during testing in 2011. The international community hopes other aspiring nuclear nations can develop nuclear power without the military muscle. EPA/INTER SERVICES/AAP

Power and peace: how nations can go nuclear without weapons

Through history, nuclear power has gone hand in hand with the nuclear arms race. But does it have to be this way? Closer international cooperation can help nations embrace nuclear power peacefully.
The Joint European Torus (seen here with a superimposed image of a plasma) is one of the machines helping to unlock fusion power. Wikimedia Commons

Nuclear fusion, the clean power that will take decades to master

Why don't we have nuclear fusion power yet? Because it involves taming plasmas at temperatures far hotter than the Sun's core. But the good news is that physicists are slowly but surely figuring out how.

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