View Single Post
mgb_phys is offline
Jul11-10, 05:02 PM
Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 8,961
Quote Quote by QuantumPion View Post
Commercial nuclear power plants are 30-40% thermodynamic efficiency in converting heat to electricity.
Although that's only reactor heat to electricity, it doesn't include any 'efficency' of the nuclear reaction.

No nuclear reactor or bomb of any kind can be greater than ~97.4% efficient at converting fission energy to heat because ~2.6% of the fission energy is lost to neutrinos.
In practice of course any fission reaction only uses a very tiny proportion of the mass.
A U235 nucleus fissioning 'only' gives around 200Mev, so 235*950Mev/200Mev = 0.1% of the mass energy.