Fission Versus Fusion – How Nuclear Power Research is Important in Tackling Climate Change

Something that we all have to do in order to save the planet, is to cut down carbon emissions. With the stark reality of the climate crisis coming ever closer, making sure that this happens requires the work of all of the world together, as well as many top scientists.

Places like the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority are essential when it comes to solving the problem of producing energy without burning fossil fuels and increasing the problem. Something that places like this, as well as many others all over the world do research on is nuclear fusion.

Image Credit

The process of nuclear fusion, put simply, is where lighter elements react with heavier elements and release large amounts of energy. To give you an idea of the scale of energy that this process is able to produce, stars, including our sun, are powered by the process of nuclear fusion.

Image Credit

This is not to be confused with nuclear fission which is a different process. Fission is splitting a heavy nucleus into two smaller ones, and fusion will combine the two. This is the process that nuclear power plants currently use, so this is why research is being done into generating power through nuclear fusion, as it is possible to generate much more power that way.

Fusion reactions are currently not as able to be well controlled as fusion, although their potential is great, which is why so many scientists are working on using this technique to generate power.

Leave a Comment