Nuclear technology is constantly in the news. So how exactly do you make nuclear fuel?
Fuel Cycle Facilities
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) regulates uranium recovery facilities that mill uranium; fuel cycle facilities that convert, enrich, and fabricate it into fuel for use in nuclear reactors, and deconversion facilities that process the depleted uranium hexafluoride for disposal.
Uranium (U), although very dense (19.1 grams per cubic centimetre), is a relatively weak, nonrefractory metal. Indeed, the metallic properties of uranium appear to be intermediate between those of silver and other true metals and those of the nonmetallic elements, so that it is not valued for structural applications.
About Nuclear Fuel Cycle
Nuclear Fuel Cycle can be defined as the set of processes to make use of nuclear materials and to return it to normal state. It starts with the mining of unused nuclear materials from the nature and ends with the safe disposal of used nuclear material in the nature.
Nuclear Fuel Processes
Nuclear power plants do not burn any fuel. Instead, they use uranium fuel, consisting of solid ceramic pellets, to produce electricity through a process called fission.
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