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Why The French Like Nuclear Energy
This photo shows the Centrale Nucléaire de Saint-Laurent. You can find a satellite image here.
Nuclear power plants generate 75% of the electricity consumed in France. Read this Frontline article to learn about France's conversion from fossil fuels to nuclear power. For more detailed information about nuclear power in France, see this US News article.
One reason other countries hesitate to adopt nuclear power is the possibility of a serious accident. Learn about the devastating accident at Chernobyl here.
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PhET Simulation: Nuclear Fission
Once you have clicked on the "simulation" link below, be sure to read the Java Security Advisory before running the simulation: To do that, click the "Read now" button on the yellow band near the top of the PhET page.
Explore nuclear fission through this set of simulations. You can create a chain reaction of uranium isotopes by setting the initial amount of uranium and the position of control rods within a reactor.
(This feature was updated on May 5, 2013.)