WARNING: I am easily distracted by shiny objects.
New commenter Dave (not to be confused with new commenter submandave) asks “how nuclear power plants work”? They work exactly like coal plants, except for the heat source.
Cliff’s Notes–Both heat water into steam. The pressure generated from this propels the steam, which keeps massive turbines spinning, which provide the motive force for the electric generators. Circle the steam back around, reheat it as necessary, and keep them turbines spinnin’.
Coal plants use chemical energy. Nuke plants exploit binding energy. Nuclear binding energy, as there are many different types.
I’ll hold off on more details, pending further questions. But here’s a question: does a molecule of water have less mass than one atom of oxygen and two of hydrogen?
My dad is also an RCT, and he refuses to accept my argument that it does. I don’t know why. He understands nuclear binding energy as well as I do. If you reduce binding energy the same exact amount of energy is released.
Well, if you burn hydrogen you get heat and light. If it wasn’t mass that was converted…what was?