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Category Archives: Nuclear Power Energy
Germany's ruling coalition says it has agreed a date of 2022 for the shutdown of all of its nuclear power plants.
Environment Minister Norbert Rottgen made the announcement after a meeting of the ruling coalition that lasted into the early hours of Monday.
Chancellor Angela Merkel had set up an ethics panel to look into nuclear power following the disaster at the Fukushima plant in Japan.
Humans might not be living on Mars or the moon anytime soon, but scientists might have just overcome one major hurdle on the route to interstellar habitation: electricity.
Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Idaho National Laboratory have designed a suitcase-sized nuclear plant that can power up to eight normal-sized homes. Thanks to its size and durability, the plant can provide fission power not only on Earth, but on the moon, on Mars, or any other place NASA requires a power generator.
In the 1950s, perhaps the height of the so-called Atomic Age, Ford developed a concept car called the Ford Nucleon. This nuclear-powered automobile was designed, according to Ford, based on the assumption that future nuclear reactors would be smaller, safer, lighter and more portable. The design called for a power capsule located in the rear of the car, charging stations replacing gas stations and 5,000 miles of driving before recharging or replacing the fuel. As is the case with many concept cars, Ford never built the Nucleon — only a model car half the size of a normal car.
It sound dangerous, but nuclear batteries have been safely powering devices such as pace-makers, satellites and underwater systems for years. They have an extremely long life and high energy density compared to chemical batteries. However, they are costly and also very large and heavy. Now researchers at the University of Missouri (MU) are developing a nuclear battery that is smaller, lighter and more efficient.