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APES Ch20Vocab Lytle

Lytle - APES Ch 20 Vocab

breeder reactors A type of nuclear reactor that utilizes between 40 and 70% of its nuclear fuel and converts fertile nuclei to fissile nuclei faster than the rate of fission Thus breeder reactors actually produce nuclear fuels.
burner reactors A type of nuclear reactor that consumes more fissionable material than it produces.
fission The splitting of an atom into smaller fragments with the release of energy.
fusion nuclear Combining of light elements to form heavier elements with the release of energy
high-level radioactive waste Extremely toxic nuclear waste, such as spent fuel elements from commercial reactors. A sense of urgency surrounds determining how we may eventually dispose of this waste material.
low-level radioactive waste Waste materials that contain sufficiently low concentrations or quantities of radioactivity so as not to present a significant environmental hazard of properly handled
meltdown Refers to a nuclear accident in which the nuclear fuel forms a molten mass that breaches the containment of the reactor, contaminating the outside environment with radioactivity
nuclear energy The energy of the atomic nucleus that, when released, may be used to do work. Controlled nuclear fission reactions take place within commercial nuclear reactors to produce energy
nuclear fuel cycle Processes involved with producing nuclear power from the mining & processing of uranium to control fission reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel, decommissioning of power plants & disposal of radioactive waste.
nuclear reactors Devices that produce controlled nuclear fission, generally for the production of electric energy.
radioactive decay A process of decay of radioisotopes that change from one isotope to another and emit one or more forms of radiation.
radioisotope A form of a chemical element that spontaneously undergoes radioactive decay
transuranic waste Radioactive waste consisting of human-made radioactive elements heavier than uranium. Includes clothing, rags, tools, and equipment that has been contaminated.
Created by: jdlytle