Harnessing nuclear energy is very important for the generation of electricity. So, Indian scientists prepare nuclear fuel, design and fabricate nuclear reactors and explosives like atom bombs and hydrogen bombs.
In India, uranium naturally occurs in Jaduguda, Jharkhand. The natural ore is then processed at Nuclear Fuel Complex in Andhra Pradesh.
Nuclear power plants in India:
In August \(1948\), the Department of Indian Scientific Research committee founded the Indian Atomic Energy Commission (\(AEC\)) in Bombay (Mumbai), Maharashtra. It serves as the central hub for all atomic energy research.
The first chairman of the Indian Atomic Energy Commission was Dr Homi Jahangir Bhaba. Nowadays, it is well-known as Bhaba Atomic Research Centre (\(BARC\)).
Dr Homi Jahangir Bhaba
Nuclear power is India's fifth most powerful source of energy. India's first nuclear power plant or station is the Tarapur Atomic Power Station (\(420\ MW\)). There are currently seven power plants in operation, one each in Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, and two plants in Tamilnadu. In Tamilnadu, the nuclear power plants are located in Kalpakkam and Kudankulam. A nuclear reactor named Kamini is located at Kalpakkam.
Kalpakkam processing unit
Kudankulam power plant
Rajasthan power plant
The Apsara nuclear reactor was India's and Asia's first nuclear power plant. India currently has \(22\) operational nuclear reactors.
Some other operating nuclear reactors are
• Cirus (\(100\ MW\))
• Dhuruva (\(100\ MW\))
• Purnima (zero energy fast breeder)