Reactors - Research
Electricity Generation - Power Reactors
Research reactors are essentially nothing more than a source of neutrons. They
are much smaller in comparison to nuclear power reactors, and therefore use
less fuel. They pose less of a risk to the environment, however,
a nuclear explosion can still be devastating.
Neutrons produced by research reactors are used for experiments as well as the
manufacture of artificial radioactive isotopes. These artificial radioisotopes
can be used in various fields including medicine, industry and agriculture.
They are very important to us, and a lot of the procedures, especially
medical and industrial, rely on these artificial isotopes that
cannot be found in the environment.
Hundreds of research reactors exist in the world, and some universities
also have them on site. They are invaluable tools for research and
development in science.
There is considerable amount of public misperception that research reactors
pose as much danger as power reactors. In fact, within a 10 kilometre radius
of a research reactor, the additional radiation exposure is totalled
to no more than what a frequent international air traveller would experience.