some sarcophagus!

The concrete shield thrown up to block radiation escaping the Chernobyl nuclear power station after it exploded in 1986 is collapsing and needs urgent reinforcement, Russia's atomic energy minister said April 22, 2003. A radiation level check is shown being taken outside the concrete sarcophagus housing the nuclear power plant's fourth reactor, April 21, 2001. (Gleb Garanich / Reuters)

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4 Responses:

  1. alister says:

    There are birds nesting _inside the sarcophagus_. It doesn't stop any radiation getting out (not even Alpha particles), it mainly keeps a little rain off of it.

    Cites: google, from an original Washington Post article

    But these were emergency measures. "Safety analyses show there are still
    about 1,000 square meters [1,200 square yards] of holes in the roof and
    sides," said Eric Schmieman, chief engineer for environmental technology at
    Battelle Memorial Institute's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in
    Richland, Wash. "A significant amount of water can go in, and dust can go
    out, and birds and squirrels and birds come and go all the time."

  2. Ah yes; another shining example of the competence of the Soviet industrial machine. IIRC this would be the second or third time it's had to be shored up, it had damage requiring repair back in 1988.

  3. cirollo says:

    It's ok. Even if the thing collapses and sends up a billowing cloud of radioactive dust, the SovieRussians can just seed the clouds and cause all the radioactive particles to fall as rain on Belarus. You know, just like they did when the thing first exploded. Yeah.