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form a 23U nucleus? 94

(3 marks)

(b) The THORP reprocessing plant at Sellafield is used to recover uranium and plutonium from spent fuel rods. In addition to reprocessing nuclear waste from the UK, it also reprocesses waste from nuclear reactors in other countries. Uranium-238 and plutonium-239 can both be used in a type of nuclear reactor called a fast breeder reactor, although this type of reactor has not yet been fully appraised in terms of reliability and safety. By using such reactors in the future, the lifetime of the world's reserves of uranium would be extended from a few hundred years to several thousand years. Plutonium can also be used to make nuclear bombs. Discuss the arguments for and against reprocessing nuclear waste.
To form a 23U nucleus, you need to combine 23 protons and 23 neutrons. This can be done through a process called nuclear fission, in which a large nucleus is split into smaller nuclei, releasing energy in the process.

As for the arguments for and against reprocessing nuclear waste, proponents of reprocessing argue that it reduces the amount of waste that needs to be stored and disposed of, and allows for the reuse of valuable materials such as uranium and plutonium. Critics, however, point out that reprocessing can release harmful radioactive materials into the environment, and that the recovered materials can be used to make nuclear weapons.

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