Article 1: “Fusion: Maybe less than 30 years, but this year unlikely. ” The article starts off by explaining the difference between fission and fusion. In Fission, atoms are bombarded and split apart, creating mass amounts of energy. The downfall of using fission is that there is not an unlimited amount of uranium 235 and radioactive waste is produced. In fusion, atoms are combined with very high energy achieved through intense heat. Fusion requires hydrogen, which is the most abundant element in the universe, so we would not run out of fuel. No radioactive waste is produced either, so it is clean energy.
The article continues by talking about how fusion power plants out on their way. A breakthrough was made with by the National Ignition facility’s worlds largest laser than could potentially ignite a fusion reaction. Unfortunately, funding for fusion experimentation ran out on September 30th, so the science has been slowed down, but current estimates put fusion energy power plants invented in about 20 years. This article does a good job at explaining the current situation regarding fusion energy. Details were relevant and the article was very informative on what we are dealing with.
This topic is important for out everyday lives because the world is currently trying to find ulterior energy sources and fusion provides unlimited clean energy, which is the perfect solution. The only issue is that we have not yet developed the technology to harness the power of fusion, but as evident in this article, scientists are hard at work. Article 2: “Should the world increase its reliance on nuclear energy? ” The beginning of this article gives brief examples of the pros and cons of nuclear reactors from both sides. Opponents cite the case of the recent Japanese power plant disaster and dangers of Iran’s formation of nuclear power.
Proponents argue that the backlash is overblown. They say how there have been no measured effects of human health from the Japanese disaster. They also stick to their notion that this is the cleanest and most efficient way to produce energy in a world that is concerned with global warming. Mark Lynas wrote in favor of continued nuclear energy. He says it is “worth the cost” and is needed to provide for the rapidly increasing population. He states that renewable energy such as wind and solar forms do not provide enough to help the world, providing only 2% of the worlds energy right now.
Peter A. Bradford states that nuclear energy is costly and dangerous. This article does a good job at showing both opinions on the topic at hand. Effective examples were used on both sides and each argument was sound. This article especially shows just how important this topic is to our everyday lives. It gives the pros and cons and allows people to gain a better understanding an opinion about the use of nuclear energy. This is the topic that needs to be resolved in the near future because we are pressing for new forms of energy besides fossil fuels.