Central is what belongs to or relative to center. This term has several meanings: it can refer to the space where coordinated actions converge; to the interior point equidistant from the limits of a surface; to the region that concentrates the busiest streets of a population; to the institute that conducts research; to the basics or essentials of something; and to the facilities where electrical energy is produced.
Nuclear, on the other hand, is what belongs to or core or to nuclear energy (produced by atomic fusion or fission reactions). If we expand the concept of nuclear energy, we can say that it is the energy released, either spontaneously or artificially, during nuclear reactions.
A nuclear power station or nuclear power plant, therefore, is the installation industrial that allows to generate electric power from the nuclear energy. Its operation usually occurs from fissile material which, through nuclear reactions, acts as fuel and provides heat for the movement of alternators that convert mechanical work into electrical energy.
The nuclear reactor It has a container with radioactive insulation material, which is filled with fissile material. The energy process involves generating a sustained and controlled reaction from auxiliary elements called moderators, which absorb excess neutrons released. Around the core of the nuclear reactor is a reflector that returns to the nucleus part of the neutrons released during the reaction.
A special shielding around the reactor and a cooling circuit they complete the main facilities of a nuclear power plant.
The location of a nuclear power plant cannot be chosen at random, but it is necessary to contemplate a large number of variables, given that high risk processes for living beings are carried out in its facilities. However, there are several examples of plants in unsuitable areas, or that do not have the necessary infrastructure to face potential emergencies. Let’s see some cases below:
Metsamor nuclear power plant
It is the only one in Armenia; an envoy from the European Union classified it in 2004 as a danger to the whole region, while trying to reach a agreement so that they closed it, something that did not obtain. This nuclear power plant was built in 1976 in a region of high seismic risk by the USSR and provides around 40% of the energy necessary to supply the more than 3 million inhabitants of Armenia, for whom its facilities are a national pride and a progress symbol.
This Japanese power station represents the largest risk nuclear power of the planet today. After the earthquake and tsunami that took place on March 11, 2011, which left their facilities in ruins, many radioactive particle leaks in the sea and in the subsoil of its surroundings. The seriousness of the situation reached such a point that the government considered the possibility of evacuating the 36 million inhabitants of the Tokyo metropolitan area, despite being 250 kilometers away from the plant.
According to the North American Nuclear Energy Regulatory Commission, this nuclear power plant has reached the point where immediate attention is required to assure the population that it is not exposed to any risk that is impossible to face. Said declaration took place shortly after a explosion of a transformer inside the plant, which paralyzed its reactors. If an earthquake were to strike your area, Indian Point is believed to be highly vulnerable. In this case, it is not about the location itself, but about the poor infrastructure to withstand the force of an earthquake.