AUTHORNational Academy of Sciences
BOOK EDITORNational Academy of Sciences, Ed.
BOOK TITLEAmerica's Energy Future: Technology and Transformation
PUBLISHERThe National Academies Press
CITYWashington, D.C.
Web Access
Available online from National Academy of Sciences   (available with fee)

This chapter on nuclear energy, part of the comprehensive and well-organized National Academy of Sciences (NAS) 2009 book-length report, focuses on the role of nuclear power in the U.S. It includes an assessment of future technologies, economics of deployment, and the challenges and impacts of increased nuclear power use by 2020, 2035, and 2050. An overview includes the NAS committee’s findings. Organized into five major sections, the chapter examines the following issues: nuclear reactor technologies, alternative fuel cycle technologies, projected costs for evolutionary nuclear plants, environmental impacts of nuclear technologies, and safety and security impacts of nuclear technologies. Each section contains useful tables, charts, and an extensive bibliography. Other chapters in the report offer valuable context for the nuclear energy chapter by considering such topics as electricity transmission and distribution.

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