Chernobyl Disaster

A childcrys as he receives medical attention 18 April 2006 at the childrens hematological and oncological centre in Minsk which was built after the Chernobyl nuclear accident. The Red Cross said today it was facing a major funding shortfall to continue to help people affected by the Chernobyl disaster, despite the attention surrounding the 20th anniversary of the nuclear catastrophe. Photo by  Viktor Drachev

A childcrys as he receives medical attention 18 April 2006 at the childrens hematological and oncological centre in Minsk which was built after the Chernobyl nuclear accident. The Red Cross said today it was facing a major funding shortfall to continue to help people affected by the Chernobyl disaster, despite the attention surrounding the 20th anniversary of the nuclear catastrophe. Photo by Viktor Drachev

The melting fuel rods and radiation leaks at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant are having a direct impact on how nuclear energy is perceived. Many are thinking back to the disasters at Chernobyl and Three Mile Island even while the disaster in Japan presents scenarios never before thought out.

The Chernobyl disaster was a nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in the Ukrainian SSR (now Ukraine). It is considered the worst nuclear power plant accident in history, and it is the only one classified as a level 7 event on the International Nuclear Event Scale.

The disaster began during a systems test on 26 April 1986 at reactor number four of the Chernobyl plant, which is near the town of Pripyat. There was a sudden power output surge, and when an emergency shutdown was attempted, a more extreme spike in power output occurred, which led to a reactor vessel rupture and a series of explosions.

This event exposed the graphite moderator components of the reactor to air, causing them to ignite. The resulting fire sent a plume of radioactive fallout into the atmosphere and over an extensive geographical area, including Pripyat. The plume drifted over large parts of the western Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, Western Europe, and Northern Europe. Large areas in Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia were evacuated, and over 336,000 people were resettled. According to official post-Soviet data, about 60% of the fallout landed in Belarus.

  See Full Photo Essay

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s