When the word nuclear is mentioned images of atom bombs, the Fukushima disaster, flashing radiation warnings and nuclear-generated mutants come to mind. However, some two-thirds of the world’s population live in nations where nuclear power plants are an integral part of electricity production and industrial infrastructures. Around the world, scientists in more than 50 countries use nearly 300 research reactors to investigate nuclear technologies or to produce radioisotopes for medical diagnosis, cancer therapy, insect eradication, domestic application, and x-rays for preserving fresh produce. Nuclear energy currently provides approximately 11% of the world’s electricity and through Koeberg nuclear power station near Cape Town it powers most of the Western Cape and supplies approximately 4.4% of South Africa’s total electricity needs since 1984. Most power stations use the same principles to generate electricity, with the only difference being the source of energy used to rotate the ...

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