The Politics of Nuclear Power

The Politics of Nuclear Power

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Several individuals noted the potentially important civilian uses of atomic energy shortly after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. That year J. Robert Oppenheimer told a national radio audience that qin the near futureq it would be possible to generate profitable electric power from qcontrolled nuclear chain reaction unitsq (reactors). It was suggested that, after fIfteen to twenty-five years of development, mature nuclear technology could provide virtually inexhaustible, cheap energy given the abundance of nuclear fuel. Admiral Lewis Strauss, the Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, stated that atomic power would generate electricity qtoo cheap to meterq (A statement that, according to Brookhaven National Laboratories' physicist Herbert Kouts, immediately qcaused consternation among his technical advisorsq [Kouts, 1983: 3)). For a brief period it was thought that airplanes would fly using atomic power, and homes would install small nuclear reactors for heat and hot water. 1950s and early 1960s a small number of prototype nuclear In the reactors came on line in the United States. The first power plant protoype reactor began operation in Shippingport, Pennsylvania in 1957. It was followed by the Dresden 1 unit near Chicago in 1959, the Yankee plant in Rowe, Massachusetts (1960), and the Indian Point (New York) and Big Rock Point (Michigan) plants in 1%2. These five plants had a combined 800 megawatts (800 MW), or less than one generating capacity ofless than percent of the total American electricity generating capacity in 1962.computing the costs of the time period associated with excess construction hours, and also compared Shorehama#39;s ... The Public Service Commission regarded the 1984-1986 delay period as being due solely to the diesel generator problem.

Title:The Politics of Nuclear Power
Author:D.P. McCaffrey
Publisher:Springer Science & Business Media - 2012-12-06


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