|JG Exkursion 2012: Tschernobyl|
Chernobyl Excursion Austrian and German Nuclear Society Young Generation Network
Prepared by Eileen Radde, Austrian Nuclear Society
A visit to the Chernobyl site where in 1986 the terrible nuclear accident happened is a challenging but interesting project for nuclear engineers. Part of the German Nuclear Society – Young Generation (GYG) had already visited this place in 2010, the Austrian Nuclear Society - Young Generation (AYG) was also trying to arrange a visit to Ukraine.
Together with Markus Zink, Eileen Radde planned and organised not only the visit but also a 4 days program. From the Ukrainian side, Denys Zenyuk was the organiser, whom we would like to thank again in this way.
The tour started on Thursday, May 17th, we flew from Frankfurt, Munich, and Dusseldorf via Vienna to Kiev. The afternoon was free for a first impression of Kiev, in the evening Denys invited us to a concert in the Art44 club in the centre. (Figure No.1)
Figure 1: Concert at ArtClub 44
Friday morning, the bus for Chernobyl picked us up at 7:45. Under normal conditions, the journey to the zone takes about 2 hours; our first appointment would have been at 10:00. 20km before we reached the zone, our bus stopped unexpectedly, and broke down. Our bus driver tried to repair the bus, successfully for another 300m. Once again repaired, we had already organised a replacement, which was a good idea, as our bus made it again 5km. (Figure 2)
We used all those breaks to take first measurements, samples and spectra. (Figure3). With a delay of two and a half hours we arrived at the zone. We had to cancel the visit in the spent fuel facility and the control room of unit number 3, but our lunch was saved.
On the way to the Unit 4 of the Chernobyl NPP we measured a dose rate increasing along the road, which we could not be explained initially. After a more detailed discussion, we figured out that due to the construction works for the shelter project, trucks were moving out from the construction area without any decontamination. It would therefore either be useful to dust protect the roads, or cover the road with bitumen or spray the trucks before leaving the area. These measurements were taken with an ATOMTEX Backpack system, and analysed with Google Earth. The values are in µSv/h, and the increase near the construction site is clearly visible from 0.5µSv/h up to 1 – 1.3µSv/h. All measurements were taken inside the bus and are displayed in figure no. 4.
Figure 4: Increase in dose rate
Figure 5: Inside the shelterhouse Figure 6: Model of reactor
The first part of the visit inside the zone was the shelter house, where all the information about the new shelter project is concentrated. We were informed about the current status of the project, why the new shelter is necessary and which parties are contributing to the project.
The shelter house is directly opposite to the Chernobyl Unit No. 4, but due to security issues we were not allowed to take any direct pictures.
Figure 7: Our group
The group picture in front of Chernobyl Unit No. 4 was a must, before we were driven to lunch.
Figure 8: Reminders Figure 9: Palace of culture
After lunch we were taken to Prypiat, were we walked around in the deserted city, from the main square to the big wheel, the palace of culture. We discovered remains left from the inhabitants, even if many things were taken or destroyed. Prypiat impressed all of us, at some parts one could see that time stood still since 26 years.
As we were 2 hours behind our schedule, we left Prypiat at 16.00. The busses back to Kiev should have been waiting for us, but they were also 2 hours late. While waiting for the bus we were able to feed an enormous catfish from the bridge.
In the evening we had a traditional Ukrainian dinner with traditional drinks.
Figure 10: Catfish Figure 11: Dinner in Kiev
Saturday was dedicated to sightseeing in Kiev. Denys had arranged, together with his college a visit to the cave monastery Lavra in Kiev. It is one of the oldest monasteries in the Russian-Orthodox church, and is located beautifully on the west river side of the Dnieper.
Afterwards we had a visit to the Chernobyl museum, which has a focus on the 25 years memorial of Chernobyl and the recent Fukushima accident. It is interesting to note that many of the anti – nuclear posters were printed in Austria. The exhibition was prepared with an eye for details. Foreign visitors may encounter difficulties walking through the museum as the descriptions are all in Russian although the museum provides audio guides in 3 languages, which are very helpful.
After a quick lunch we had rented a boat for a tour on the river Dnieper which is an impressive way to see Kiev and is highly recommended.
Figure 14 + 15: Boat Tour
After a farewell to our hosts followed by soccer – watching evening, we left Kiev on Sunday. It was a nice and technically interesting tour, despite a few problems; we all enjoyed the Ukrainian atmosphere the hospitality and style, and we hope that some of us will come back once in a while!
Thanks again to our Ukrainian hosts!
© Eileen Radde, 2012
|Letzte Aktualisierung ( Dienstag, 23. Oktober 2012 )|