There are about 30 countries in the world that have nuclear power plants. Being more than 400 nuclear reactors that supply approximately 11% of the electricity consumed on the planet. Energy is an essential factor for the well-being of the human being and sustainable economic development, that is why nuclear energy is committed to because it is cleaner than others, however, it also has its great disadvantages.
What are nuclear power plants
Nuclear power plants or plants are industrial facilities in which electrical energy is generated from the thermal energy that has been produced thanks to the nuclear fission reactions that occur in a nuclear reactor. The nuclear reactor is the main component of a power plant, since that is where the nuclear fuel is deposited and, in addition, it has systems that make it possible to start, maintain and stop, in a controlled way, the nuclear fission reactions that release a large amount of thermal energy.
The thermal energy that is released is used to heat water until it is converted into steam at high temperature and pressure. The steam feeds a turbine, making it rotate and this is connected to a generator that transforms the mechanical energy produced by the rotation of the turbine into electrical energy .
How many nuclear power plants are there around the world
Have you ever asked yourself, which are the countries with the highest number of nuclear power plants? Rather than asking ourselves the number of nuclear power plants and which countries have the largest number of power plants, it would be more appropriate to ask about the number of nuclear reactors, since the same nuclear power plant can have more than one reactor. According to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it is estimated that there are more than 400 operational nuclear reactors in the world .
It is the United States that leads the list with 96 nuclear reactors and France follows with 58, in addition there are 48 nuclear reactors in China, ranking third among the countries with the largest nuclear reactors in the world. If we follow the list there are 38 nuclear reactors in Russia, 36 nuclear reactors in Japan, 24 nuclear reactors in Korea and 22 nuclear reactors in India. The rest of the countries have less than 20 reactors and many of them, such as Slovenia or Iran, among others, only have one. It should be added that, in addition to operating reactors, many countries are building new reactors.
The largest nuclear power plant in the world is the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant located in Japan , in Niigata prefecture, exactly in the city of Kashiwazaki. It has 420 hectares, has 7 reactors, 2 of the ABWR type and 5 of the BWR type, generating approximately 8,0000 net MW. This amount of energy supplies more than 15 million people. However, this plant was closed in 2011 and is currently still inactive, despite wanting to be reactivated.
In Europe, 14 of the 27 countries that make up the Member States have nuclear power plants. In total, it has 182 active nuclear reactors , which supply approximately 26% of the total electrical energy consumed throughout the European Union per year. In addition, four other reactors are under construction in countries such as France, Finland and Slovakia.
France is the country in Europe with the largest number of nuclear reactors , producing 78% of its electricity, followed by Slovakia producing 55% of electricity of nuclear origin, with 50% Belgium and Hungary and with 40% Sweden.
How many nuclear power plants are there in Spain
In Spain there are 5 nuclear power plants in operation and these are located in 5 different locations. In two of the nuclear power plants there are two reactors, so Spain has a total of 7 nuclear reactors . The nuclear power plants that have two reactors are the Almaraz nuclear power plant, in Cáceres, and the Ascó nuclear power plant, in Tarragona, which you can see in this image.
France is the European country with the greatest dependence on nuclear energy and has 58 active nuclear reactors distributed among its 19 nuclear power plants , all of which supply approximately 78% of electricity, but not only satisfies the country’s electricity needs. In the image below you can see the Chooz nuclear power plant.
France, within the European countries, is the main exporter of nuclear energy . One of the reasons why France invests in nuclear energy is due to the shortage of other energy resources such as gas, coal or oil.