Ever thought what a white smoke cloud like structure coming out from any nuclear power station is composed of? It is not a gas coming out of the huge bell shaped structure visible from miles away but just steam. No dangerous radiation is emitted from generation of electricity in a nuclear plant, in fact radiation occurs naturally in the environment too.
The site director of Rajasthan Atomic Power Station site, VK Jain said, “You will not see a nuclear power plant erupting into a mushroom cloud of gases, there is nothing to fear. It is physically impossible for a reactor to explode like a nuclear weapon or atomic bomb. All reactors are built with many layers of safety controls and design, and India has excellent safety record of 50 years. There has been no incident of radioactivity beyond stipulated limits in public domain.”
Highlighting the efficiency of the nuclear facilities in India, head of the public awareness division, Department of Atomic Energy, Ravi Shankar said, “Kaiga Generating Systems KGS-1, has world record for continuous operation of 962 days which is noteworthy.” The steam generated from a nuclear plant is not radioactive because it does not come into contact with the primary circuit. It is converted back into water and cooled in a cooling tower.
The water is either used again as a water bath or is released into a river, lake, or ocean as most of the power plants are built near rivers.
Notably, radiation dose around nuclear power plants is a negligible fraction of natural background added Ravi Shankar.
About 18 per cent of natural radiation comes from buildings or soil, 14 per cent is cosmic, 42 per cent from radon, 11 per cent from food or drinking water making it a total of 85 per cent while nuclear industry is just one per cent.