Reed Research Reactor

NRC photo of Cherenkov effect in the Reed Research Reactor
NRC photo of Cherenkov effect in the Reed Research Reactor

As far as the toxicity is concerned New Jersey is a champion. It is not only one of the most toxic areas in US but also hosts a community very knowledgeable about toxic technologies.    In a period  of this young research project while I was trying extend the topic to more physical and scientific matters in nuclear power production I came across this friend at the train station who is a graduate student at Mason Gross as we were doing that train station small talk I mentioned this project and the research trip that I was doing nowadays. Then he gave me this valuable information about a research reactor which meant to me less driving around, less homeland security around but more physical information and visuals.

So, the story is Reed College in Portland Oregon, about 200 miles west of Hanford Site which   is a mostly decommissioned nuclear production complex ,  runs a research reactor.  Which means it is also located on the 200 miles west of the one of the most historic buildings at Hanford, the B Reactor, code named 105-B during World War II. The B Reactor was the world’s first, full-scale nuclear reactor and produced the plutonium used in the “Fat Man” bomb dropped over Nagasaki, Japan, in August of 1945.

The Reed Reactor Facility is primarily used for instruction, research, and analysis, especially trace-element analysis. Since the initial startup, the reactor, in addition to providing student research opportunities, has worked to educate the surrounding community on the principles of nuclear energy and fission-reactor operation.

For all the experiments and resarch done on the reactor. Of the 2500 grams of uranium-235 that they started with in 1968, only 70 grams have been used. So I don’t really need to hurry up to visit but still, maybe this winter as it hit the low tens, a safe place to heat up.

They have a pretty decent website with most of the information that one can ask about a nuclear research reactor.

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