Nuclear reactor physics is the branch of science that deals with the study and application of chain reaction to induce controlled rate of fission for energy in reactors. Most nuclear reactors use a chain reaction to induce a controlled rate of nuclear fission in fissile material, releasing both energy and free neutrons. A reactor consists of an assembly of nuclear fuel (a reactor core), usually surrounded by a neutron moderator such as regular water, heavy water, graphite, or zirconium hydride, and fitted with mechanisms such as control rods that control the rate of the reaction.
The physics of nuclear fission has several quirks that affect the design and behavior of nuclear reactors. This article presents a general overview of the physics of nuclear reactors and their behavior.
Read more about Nuclear Reactor Physics: Criticality, Subcritical Multiplication, Neutron Moderators, Delayed Neutrons and Controllability, Kinetics, Reactor Poisons, Uranium Enrichment, Oklo: A Natural Nuclear Reactor
Famous quotes containing the words nuclear and/or physics:
“American universities are organized on the principle of the nuclear rather than the extended family. Graduate students are grimly trained to be technicians rather than connoisseurs. The old German style of universal scholarship has gone.”
—Camille Paglia (b. 1947)
“The fundamental laws of physics do not describe true facts about reality. Rendered as descriptions of facts, they are false; amended to be true, they lose their explanatory force.”
—Nancy Cartwright (b. 1945)