An arch for Chernobyl.
The design life of the Shelter was 30 years. By the first decade of the 21st century, its floor slabs and walls had decayed, rusted, and partially collapsed. Moreover, this construction did not allow for working with nuclear waste, and the radioactive contents of the 4th reactor needed to finally be buried.
The Shelter-2 or Arch (the official name is New Safe Confinement) was built to protect against radiation during the dismantling of the old sarcophagus or from a possible accident, and the sarcophagus itself is protected from weather that could cause unforeseen chemical reactions in its “filling.”
The Arch was an unprecedented structure. It is a double shell 100 meters (328 ft) high and 150 meters (492 ft) tall, covering the 4th reactor and separating it from the 3rd. It is built on artificial rocky soil from concrete pillars and slabs and is made of high-quality steel capable of withstanding gamma radiation. The metal alone weights 18,000 tons. The Arch sections were assembled on a nearby site and moved along special rails over the existing buildings. After work was completed, dismantling, decontamination, and disposal of the power unit began. The expected service life is 100 years. The Arch was commissioned at the end of 2016.
This article was published in the book Interesting Chernobyl.
You could download this book in PDF file for free here.
© Sky Horse Publishing House (Kyiv) / Nahs Haus, 2019
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