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In a nuclear power station, however, the fissioning of uranium atoms replaces the burning of coal or gas.
In a nuclear reactor the uranium fuel is assembled in such a way that a controlled fission chain reaction can be achieved.
After enrichment, the UF) which is formed into fuel pellets.
Both require heat to produce steam to drive turbines and generators.
It is therefore said to be 'fissile' and we use the expression 'nuclear fission'.
Meanwhile, like all radioactive isotopes, they decay.
The end product of the mining and milling stages, or of ISL, is uranium oxide concentrate (U). Before it can be used in a reactor for electricity generation, however, it must undergo a series of processes to produce a useable fuel.
For most of the world's reactors, the next step in making the fuel is to convert the uranium oxide into a gas, uranium hexafluoride (UF), which enables it to be enriched.