chernobyl disaster

from nuclear disasters posted in history


chernobyl disaster
pryp'yat', ukraine

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posted by pete_nice #

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In northern Ukraine, near the border with Belarus, and adjacent to the former city of Pripyat, are the radioactive remnants of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant.

On April 26, 1986, the #4 reactor had a catastrophic power increase that led to a series of explosions in its core. This dispersed large quantities of radioactive fuel and core materials into the atmosphere, and led to the worst nuclear disaster in history. Chernobyl is one of only two Level 7 events (the maximum rating) on the International Nuclear Event Scale- the other is Fukushima.

While managing the crisis of the Chernobyl meltdown, the #4 reactor was quickly coated with layers of concrete to form "the sarcophagus," a physical barrier to help protect workers against radiation. Even today, radiation levels are so high that the workers responsible for rebuilding the sarcophagus are only allowed to work five hours a day for one month before taking 15 days of rest.

Today, the area 19 miles in all directions is considered the "Chernobyl Exclusion Zone" and will not be habitable for 20,000 years.

Exclusion Zone entrance, Chernobyl, photo: Slawojar@wiki