The concept of atom has existed for many centuries. But in recent years, we began to understand the enormous power generated by atomic energy/nuclear energy. In the years just before and during World War II, nuclear research focused mainly on the development of defence weapons. Later, scientists concentrated on peaceful applications of nuclear technology. An important use of nuclear energy is the generation of electric energy. After years of research, scientists have successfully applied nuclear technology to many other scientific, medical, and industrial purposes.

The energy released when two atoms are made to bombarded with each other is generally called as atomic energy. Atomic energy is the source of Nuclear power, which uses sustained nuclear fission to generate heat and electricity. This energy is not only used to generate electricity but also used to create atomic bombs and in many other fields.

Use of atomic energy in Food and Agriculture

  • Radiations from atomic energy are used to develop hundreds of varieties of hardier, more disease-resistant crops—including peanuts, tomatoes, onions, rice, soybeans and barley.
  • Radiations from atomic helps to Improve the nutritional value of some crops, as well as improve their baking or melting qualities or reduce their cooking time.
  • Radiations from atomic used to cure the illnesses that strike animals, allowing the breeding of disease-resistant livestock.

 

 

Use of atomic energy in Human Health

  • Atomic energy’s very common application is in the treatment of cancer, i.e., through the use of radiotherapy.

  • Small amounts of radioisotope released from atomic energy are used for diagnostic and research purposes.

  • The radioisotopes released from atomic energy is  used  in measuring the concentration of various enzymes, some drugs.

  • Atomic energy techniques have also helped in monitoring the levels of toxic substances in food, air and water.

 

Use of atomic energy in Sterilization

Gamma emissions from atomic  energy can be used for the sterilization of medical supplies like cotton, bandages, gloves used for surgery, syringes, burn dressings, etc.

Use of atomic energy in Tracing Pollutants

  • Radioisotopes from atomic energy can be actively used for tracing the pollutants present in air.

  • The dangerous residues of the radioisotope from atomic energy in small amounts in air can be very harmful to humans (can cause health effects such as kidney disease, etc.).

 

Use of atomic energy in Detecting Leaks in Pipelines

The gamma rays emitted by the radioisotopes resulted from atomic energy can now be used to check welds of gas and oil pipelines.

Use of atomic energy in Power Sources

  • While decaying, the radioisotopes from atomic energy emit lots of energy, which is used to control the heart pacemaker.

  • Atomic energy also provides power to the beacons and satellites used for navigation.

 

Use of atomic energy in Determination of Age

The most interesting use of the atomic energy is that it can be used by the archaeologists, geologists and anthropologists in determining the age of rocks, insects, etc.

Use of atomic energy in  Space

Both fission and fusion of atomic  energy is actively used in providing power for the missions in space.

Use of atomic energy in Generating Electricity

  • With so many different uses, the use of  atomic energy for the production of electricity is the most important one.

  • The energy released by the fission that takes place in a atomic reactor of the nuclear power plant is converted and generated into electricity.

 

 

Steam energy

 

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