Photo credit: The Sun
Chernobyl’s original “sarcophagus” built to contain the 1986 disater’s fallout is in danger of collapsing, around 33 years after the event that covered the nation and most of Europe in a cloud of radioactivity. Researchers claim there is a “very high” probability the 16,000,000 lbs 14,000,000 cubic ft block used to contain the structure will cave in under the sheer volume of its weight. There is a replacement “sarcophagus” recently unveiled in July costing £2billion. Read more for a video tour of the new sarcophagus and additional information.
The original concrete sarcophagus locked in 200 tons of radioactive corium, 30 tons of highly contaminated dust and 16 tones of uranium as well as plutonium, but by 1996, experts said the structure had deteriorated so badly that it would be impossible to repair. Radiation levels reached as high as 10,000 röntgens per hour compared to the normal dose in busy cities, which is between 30-50 per hour. The new sarcophagus, also known as the New Safe Confinement (NSC) project, was completed this year and protects against the release of radioactive substances from Chernobyl into the atmosphere.