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Nuclear Power/Nuclear power in Australia

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Question
Hi Dr Welter
I am a student in grade 12 in Australia and am currently trying to answer my question which is 'Should Australia adopt nuclear power?' As I understand, we currently have no nuclear power plants operating in Australia. I was wondering if you could provide me with an insight into the benefits and disadvantages of nuclear power in a country that has never used it before. Specifically cost, effectiveness versus other forms of energy, safety and environmental impact. I am currently studying physics and chemistry and have an understanding of how nuclear power plants work, so any scientific input you could add would also be extremely useful.

Thank you

Answer
Jaya, thank you for the question! Nuclear power is a safe way to provide carbon free baseload power to cities. I would recommend the following presentation as an excellent source of pros and cons of nuclear power in Australia.

http://www.engineersaustralia.org.au/sites/default/files/shado/Divisions/Sydney%  

Nuclear Power

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Dr. Kent Welter

Expertise

Ever wonder what the next generation of nuclear reactor might look like? Or if the radiation from Fukushima is making your sushi unsafe? I have a passion for nuclear energy and new technologies. Ask me anything! Expertise in nuclear power safety, licensing, advanced reactors, risk, and radiation. I also love science fiction and dabble in space reactors.

Experience

Reactor Systems Engineer and Branch Chief at the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Nuclear Safety Engineering Manager at NuScale Power.

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering from Oregon State University (2002)

Awards and Honors
2011 Oregon Stater Award. 2007 Scientific Achievement Award from the Oregon Institute of Technology Alumni.

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