The Core of One of the Four Darlington Reactors
-- Before Startup

[ pour la version française ]

The core of a CANDU reactor is contained in a cylindrical vessel called a calandria. Running from one end of the calandria to the other are several hundred pressure tubes; they contain the uranium fuel bundles, and through them the heavy water coolant flows. The superheated coolant is then used to boil ordinary water, which produces steam, which spins a turbine, which generates electricity. Once the reactor has operated for a while, the irradiated fuel becomes so radioactive that a man standing in front of the reactor face (as this man is) would receive a lethal dose of radiation in a very short time, even if the reactor were completely shut down.

photo by Robert Del Tredici from his book entitled At Work In The Fields Of The Bomb (Harper and Row, 1987)

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