What is a Nuclear Reactor?

A Nuclear Reactor is a systematic arrangement to convert Nuclear Energy into thermal energy and then to Electrical energy .  Nuclear Reactor uses fissile material, heavy atomic nuclei, called as Nuclear Fuel. Fissile material leads to nuclear fission when the nuclei are hit by suitable energy Neutrons.
Example for Fissile Material is Uranium oxide.

Fission reaction of Uranium is as follows:

The energy evolved is distributed as kinetic energy of fission fragments  and heat.

This heat energy transmitted to a coolant which leads to generation of steam that could drive turbine system for conversion of thermal energy into electrical energy.

There are different types of Nuclear Reactors operating across the world.

a)  Boiling Water Reactors
b)  Pressurized Water Reactors
c)  Pressurized heavy water Reactors
d)  Fast Breeder Reactors

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