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Title: Topics in nuclear power

The 101 nuclear plants operating in the US today are far safer than they were 20-30 years ago. For example, there's been about a 100-fold reduction in the occurrence of 'significant events' since the late 1970s. Although the youngest of currently operating US plants was designed in the 1970s, all have been significantly modified over the years. Key contributors to the safety gains are a vigilant culture, much improved equipment reliability, greatly improved training of operators and maintenance workers, worldwide sharing of experience, and the effective use of probabilistic risk assessment. Several manufacturers have submitted high quality new designs for large reactors to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for design approval, and several companies are vigorously working on designs for smaller, modular reactors. Although the Fukushima reactor accident in March 2011 in Japan has been an almost unmitigated disaster for the local population due to their being displaced from their homes and workplaces and also due to the land contamination, its 'lessons learned' have been important for the broader nuclear industry, and will surely result in safer nuclear plants worldwide - indeed, have already done so, with more safety improvements to come.
Authors:
 [1]
  1. Earth Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22391275
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: AIP Conference Proceedings; Journal Volume: 1652; Journal Issue: 1; Conference: 3. Conference on the Physics of Sustainable Energy: Using Energy Efficiently and Producing It Renewably, Berkeley, CA (United States), 8-9 Mar 2014; Other Information: (c) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
21 SPECIFIC NUCLEAR REACTORS AND ASSOCIATED PLANTS; CONTAMINATION; DESIGN; FUKUSHIMA DAIICHI NUCLEAR POWER STATION; GAIN; JAPAN; NATURAL DISASTERS; NUCLEAR INDUSTRY; NUCLEAR POWER; NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS; PROBABILISTIC ESTIMATION; REACTOR ACCIDENTS; REACTOR MAINTENANCE; REACTOR SAFETY; RELIABILITY; RISK ASSESSMENT; TRAINING