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From: (B. Alan Guthrie)
Subject: Re: Efficency of Nuclear Power
Date: 5 Nov 1997 13:47:12 GMT

In article <>,
Stephen AT Pathmarajah  <> wrote:
>I am a supporter of Nuclear Power. I am trying to establish the
>efficiency of Nuclear power stations. Does any one know what are the
>typical efficiency of Nuclear Power stations.

   Typically about 32% for a light-water reactor.

>More to the point how does one measure the efficiency of the nuclear
>power station.

  The thermal efficiency is defined as the electrical energy produced
  divided by the thermal energy.  We can perform a calorimetric
  (in a PWR, we actually perform the calorimetric on the secondary
  system, since we can more accurately measure flows there) to determine
  the thermal power, and the electrical power is very accurately
  measured, since it translates into money ($$$$$$).

>To complete the data collection I would appreciate the overall
>of conventional power stations as well.

  The efficency depends on the thermodynamic power conversion cycle.
  For a modern coal-fired plant without pollution controls, the
  efficiency can be as high as 40% or so.  But when the emission
  controls are added, the efficiency falls to, guess what, about
  32%.  My figures for coal stations date back to the mid-1970s,
  and admittedly may be a little dated.

B. Alan Guthrie, III          |   Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes?
                              | |   My opinions only

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