You are here

Lesson 5 - Fission and Chain Reactions

Lesson Four showed how the nuclei of atoms store energy and how unstable atoms decay and release energy. How do nuclear engineers use this knowledge to help them harness energy to make electricity? The answer lies in being able to start a nuclear chain reaction in fuel inside a nuclear power plant and keep it going. This lesson examines nuclear reactions called fission as well as how uranium is processed from ore to fuel.

Specific topics covered in this lesson include:

  • Fission
  • Chain reaction
  • Uranium fuel
    • Mining
    • Milling
    • Enrichment
    • Fuel fabrication