Comparison And Contrast Between Nuclear And Solar Energy Engineering Essay

August 12, 2017 Engineering

Human existences have been utilizing fossil fuels for 100s of old ages, fulfilling the demand of industrialisation. The behaviour of utilizing fossil fuels, on the other manus, causes immense pollution, such as dirt, H2O and atmosphere taint. In add-on, fossil fuels, such as solid, liquid and gas, are all confronting on the exhaustion. It is evidentiary that the state of affairss need to be checked or repressed. However, the solutions should fulfill the pressing demand of energy as good. Nuclear and solar energy are two clean, operable solutions for human existences. Because they have been tested and been put to utilize since the mid 20th century. On the surface, atomic and solar energy seem perfectly different in other facets except for low direct pollution and practicableness. In fact, they portion some important similarities while they are wholly different in other facets. This essay will concentrate on comparison and contrasting atomic and solar energy by discoursing the similarities in gas emanations, high expend in increasing efficiency and electricity monetary value, and the differences in safety and equipments.

There are legion similarities between atomic and solar energy. The most important one is that they are pollution-free and have no direct emanation of C dioxide or other nursery gases. Both atomic and solar energy will give a C dioxide economy of 1330kg for 1kw electric power per twelvemonth ( Bosshard, 2006 ) . Even though they lead to indirect emanation of gases, the measure of pollutant is little and ineluctable.

However, at the monetary value of low emanation, the betterment of efficiency is expensive and hard for both. In other words, they require high disbursals in stuff and care, particularly when increasing the electricity production. Furthermore, harmonizing to Bosshard ( 2006 ) and Murray ( 2000 ) , low efficiency is a traditional challenge for atomic energy to suppress as it is in the solar energy field. Nuclear works has efficiency about 7 % in roll uping radioactive energy to drive dynamotors. Merely 30-40 % energy can be converted into electricity power by dynamotors. Likewise, neither silicon solar cell nor compound solar cell has an mean efficiency which is over 16 % ( Edmonds, 2007 ) . Even thought both atomic and solar energy have programs for addition of efficiencyaa‚¬ ” merger for atomic energy and Thin Film Poly for solar energyaa‚¬ ” that will do a great betterment in efficiency, these techniques will non be conquer and set into application within a decennary.

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Another common point that these two sorts of energy portion together is the monetary value of electricity. Harmonizing to Thamm ( 2007 ) , the monetary value for solar energy is $ 0.35- $ 0.6 per kWh for solar cell and $ 0.085- $ 0.135 per kWh for solar thermal, while Fell ( 2006 ) claimed that the atomic electricity monetary value was from $ 0.3/kWh to $ 0.6/kWh ; whereas, comparing to fossil fuels energy, which is simply 0.04 dollar per kilowatt-hour ; hence, the expensive costs these two energies need will act upon the competitory ability of worldwide market evidently.

In malice of the similarities, safety is the chief job. It caused the differences of world-wide application in fund input and popularity between atomic and solar energy. Harmonizing to Duncan ( 2002 ) , radioactive stuffs are regarded as the most basic beginnings for atomic works, which is highly deathly pollutant. Therefore, as a solution, it will be stored in deeply in the Earth with high-end and mature engineering. Nuclear energy becomes one of the luxury goods for some affluent states. In contrast, solar energy application is much safer, such as solar cell, it can non merely be built in solar station but besides be applied in every facet of day-to-day life in both developed and developing states. For case, it supplies energy to places or even toies. Furthermore, the two celebrated atomic accidents, The Three Mile Island in 1979 and The Chernobyl in 1986, are regarded as the another chief apparent ground for conservationists to decline atomic power and for many counties to prefer seting more fund into other clean energy like solar energy.

There are three differences of the equipment applied to bring forth electricity for these two sorts of energy. The chief difference involves the rule of operation of energy transmutation. In this country, solar energy is more direct. Gonyeau ( 2003 ) stated that atomic works applied some particular substance to absorb the radioactive energy from radioactive stuff in order to change over the energy into the heat of vapour, which would drive the thermoelectric generator to bring forth electricity. Furthermore, heavy H2O, which is so hard to bring forth that its value is higher than gold, is requite as Refrigerant. In contrast, Solar equipments prefer to bring forth electricity more straight by roll uping photon energy and transforming it into possible energy in the cell or merely garner the heat of visible radiation with H2O or parabolic dish aggregator ( Corporation, 2008 ) . As consequence, solar energy is more convenient than atomic energy. Not merely the ways of energy transmutation are distinguishable, protection job is besides regarded as the country where difference exists. Nuclear works needs frequent scrutiny and to be good protected, because every small error will cover to the over heated of the reactor which is likely to do the catastrophe that beyond retrieve. However, solar equipments are more easy to be controlled and do non repay every bit much attention as atomic works does. The last point of difference is in energy assemblage. It is evidently that atomic works can bring forth 100s of times electricity than solar equipments ( Edmonds, 2007 ) . In dependence, trouble in garnering energy is regarded as the disadvantage of solar energy, while the atomic works is good at this work.

From what has been discussed above, it is easy to place that solar energy is more promising than atomic energy for its pollution-free production, safety, and convenience. Besides, while atomic energy, particularly the merger reaction that will be applied in future, is much danger and shouldering the force per unit area of atomic proliferation, solar energy has wider and wider application in all facets in society. Furthermore, solar energy is one of the energies which are about eternity for worlds, because it can be found even outside the solar system ; while atomic energy is enduring the deficit of beginning. In brief, solar energy will develop good and go far more popular than now.

In decision, by comparing and contrasting these two sorts of energy, it is clear that atomic and solar energy portion the common point of low nursery gas emanations and high cost of electricity. However, they still differ in many countries such as safety and rule of operation of devices. It is obviously that the application of atomic and solar energy will turn in the hereafter ; while solar energy is more promising. Although there are several troubles for both atomic and solar energy to suppress, great advancements will be made. Consequently, they will function Human existences and fulfill the increasing demand of devouring energy.


Corporation, P.W ( 2008 ) . Solar Energy. available at: hypertext transfer protocol: // ( Accessed day of the month 09/03/2010 )

Duncan, T ( 2000 ) . Advanced Physics. 4th Edition, London: Murray Publishers Ltd.

Edmonds, JA ( 2007 ) . Nuclear Energy. available at: hypertext transfer protocol: // ( Accessed day of the month 08/03/2010 )

Bosshard, P ( 2006 ) . An Appraisal of Solar Energy Conversion Technologies and Research Opportunities. Available at: hypertext transfer protocol: // ( Accessed day of the month 07/03/2010 )

Gonyeau, J ( 2003 ) . Nuclear Energy. available at: hypertext transfer protocol: // ( Accessed day of the month 08/03/2010 )

Fell, H. J. ( 2006 ) . Uranium Resources and Nuclear Energy. available at: hypertext transfer protocol: // ( Accessed day of the month 09/03/2010 )

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Thamm, A. L ( 2007 ) . A Strategic Research Agenda for Photovoltaic Solar Energy Technology. available at: hypertext transfer protocol: // ( Accessed day of the month 07/03/2010 )


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