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The History and Inventor of Nuclear Power plant

In 100 BC an Alexandrian Greek speaking philosopher by the name of Ctesibius
invented the piston - pump.
In 1606, Italian scientist Giovanni Batista della Porta of Naples heated water in a flask until the water turned into steam.

In the 1600's several scientists continued work on steam powered pumps. Robert Boyle proposed the steam engine in 1678.

In 1680's a gunpowder explosion was used to heat water. Jean de Hautefeuille tried to up water, and Dutch astronomer Christiaan Huygens tried a piston in a


In 1712, Thomas Newcom and John Calley built their first successful steam engine.

In 1769 Nicholas Cugnot built the first mechanically propelled road vehicle

In 1789 Uranium was discovered by Martin Klaproth, a German chemist, and named after the planet Uranus.

In 1895 Ionising radiation was discovered by Wilhelm Rontgen by passing an electric current through an evacuated glass tube and producing continuous X-rays.
In 1896 Henri Becquerel found that pitchblende an ore containing radium and uranium caused a photographic plate to darken. He went on to demonstrate that

this was due to beta radiation electrons and alpha particles helium nuclei being emitted.
In 1896 Pierre and Marie Curie gave the name 'radioactivity' to this phenomenon.
In 1898 isolated polonium and radium from the pitchblende. Radium was later used in medical treatment.
In 1898 Samuel Prescott showed that radiation destroyed bacteria in food.
In 1902 Ernest Rutherford showed that radioactivity as a spontaneous event emitting an alpha or beta particle from the nucleus created a different element.

He went on to develop a fuller understanding of atoms.

In 1905 This was the first experimental confirmation of Albert Einstein's paper putting forward the equivalence between mass and energy, which had been


In 1919 he fired alpha particles from a radium source into nitrogen and found that nuclear rearrangement was occurring, with formation of oxygen.
Niels Bohr was another scientist who advanced our understanding of the atom and the way electrons were arranged around its nucleus through to the 1940s.

In 1911 Frederick Soddy discovered that naturally-radioactive elements had a number of different isotopes radionuclides, with the same chemistry.
In 1911, George de Hevesy showed that such radionuclides were invaluable as tracers, because minute amounts could readily be detected with simple instruments.

In 1932 James Chadwick discovered the neutron.
In 1932 Cockcroft and Walton produced nuclear transformations by bombarding atoms with accelerated protons.

In 1934 Irene Curie and Frederic Joliot found that some such transformations created artificial radionuclides.
The next year Enrico Fermi found that a much greater variety of artificial radionuclides could be formed when neutrons were used instead of protons.

In January 1939 Frisch then confirmed this figure experimentally
1939 developments sparked activity in many laboratories. Hahn and Strassman showed that fission not only released a lot of energy but that it also released additional neutrons which could cause fission in other uranium nuclei and possibly a self-sustaining chain reaction leading to an enormous release of energy.

In 1900 Work on radioactive minerals found in central Asia began
Enrico Fermi (1901-1954), an Italian American physicist who won the 1938 Nobel Prize in Physics .
Otto Hahn (1879-1968), a German physical chemist who won the 1944 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
Enrico Fermi (1901-1954), an Italian American physicist who won the 1938 Nobel Prize in Physics  Otto Hahn (1879-1968), a German physical chemist who won the

1944 Nobel Prize in Chemistry Lise Meitner (1878-1968), an Austrian Swedish physicist Hyman G. Rickover (1898-1986), a Polish American naval officer

Discovering Fission Nuclear fission involves the splitting of an atomic nucleus, leading to the release of large amounts of energy. Nuclear fission was discovered in Germany in 1938 by Otto Hahn after he had bombarded uranium with neutrons and observed traces of radioactive barium. Meitner and her nephew, Otto Robert Frisch, were able to calculate the enormous energy that would be released in this type of reaction. They published their

results early in 1939. Nuclear fission was quickly verified in several laboratories.
Danish physicist Niels Bohr soon demonstrated that the rare uranium 235 (U-235) isotope is much more likely to fission than the common uranium 238 (U-238) isotope, which makes up 99.3 percent of natural uranium.

In 1909 St Petersburg Academy of Sciences began a large-scale investigation
1917 Revolution gave a boost to scientific research and over 10 physics institutes were established in major Russian towns, particularly St Petersburg, in the years which followed.

In the 1920s and early 1930s many prominent Russian physicists worked abroad, encouraged by the new regime initially as the best way to raise the level of expertise quickly. These included Kirill Sinelnikov, Pyotr Kapitsa and Vladimir Vernadsky.

In 1931  Kirill Sinelnikov returned from Cambridge to organise a department at the Ukrainian Physico-Technical Institute FTI in Kharkov which had been set up in 1928.

In 1933 became the Department of Nuclear Physics under Kurchatov with four separate laboratories.
In 1940 saw great advances being made in the understanding of nuclear fission including the possibility of a chain reaction. At the urging of Kurchatov and his colleagues, the Academy of Sciences set up a "Committee for the Problem of Uranium" in June 1940 chaired by Vitaly Khlopin

In June 1942 the US Army took over process development, engineering design, procurement of materials and site selection for pilot plants for four methods of making fissionable material.

In August 1943 an agreement was finally signed by Mr Churchill and President Roosevelt in Quebec.
In December 1951 The first nuclear reactor to produce electricity (albeit a trivial amount was the small Experimental Breeder reactor (EBR-1) in Idaho, in

the USA, which started up.

In October, 1956 It began producing about 90 megawatts of electric power.
In December 2, 1957, on the fifteenth anniversary of the first controlled nuclear chain reaction, the Shippingport Atomic Power Station in Shippingport,

Pennsylvania, became the first full-scale commercial nuclear power plant in the United States.

In September, 1959 The Dresden Nuclear Power Station, completed by Commonwealth Edison.
In 1973, forty-two plants were in operation producing 26,000 megawatts, fifty more were under construction, and about one hundred were on order.
In 1986, more than one hundred nuclear power plants were operating in the United States, producing about 60,000 megawatts of power.

In December 1993, the total number of nuclear power plants in the United States is 109, collectively producing 610 billion kWhs of electricity.

1 comment:

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