The Chernobyl Disaster Essay

1233 words - 5 pages

On the 26th of April 1986, in the early hours of the morning it was an average day like any other. The civilians of Pripyat had no idea that a catastrophic event was about to occur and that their lives would never be the same again. The world’s worst nuclear accident was about to take place. A nuclear explosion flourished its surroundings with radioactive poison, which would contaminate the area of Pripyat, making it an unliveable ghost town. There is no clear evidence in how this disaster actually unfolded, but there are key factors that caused this explosion to happen, such as a flawed reactor design in which inadequately trained personnel were operating (reference). The effects of the explosion would live on for many years to come, causing many health impacts. Radiation poisoning, cancer such as Thyroid and congenital abnormalities (reference), food contamination and mental instability are just a few. Pripyat would then become a marvellous animal sanctuary, where even rare species of animals could in a peaceful environment, away from human life. Chernobyl would leave an everlasting stamp on the history of disastrous events, created by man.
The factor which lead to the Chernobyl disaster occurring, was an experiment by engineers on the evening shift at Chernobyl 4 to see how long the turbines would spin and supply power to the main circling pumps while losing main electrical power supply. The test was carried out the previous year, but it didn’t quite work out as planned, new designs were to be tested and hopefully work out according to plan. The operators at the time made quite a few mistakes in which they would have no idea it would have such a dramatic effect on the Chernobyl plant. At 2300 control rods, which would regulate the fission process in a nuclear reactor by absorbing the neutrons and slowing the chain reaction, they were lowered to about or the normal output required for the test. One major error which lead to the disaster was that too many control rods were dropped which lowered the output by an incredible amount, causing an almost complete shutdown of the Chernobyl plant (reference). Operators continued the test, unaware the potential harm that was created by this test. Operators were concerned by instability, they began to raise the rods to increase the power output. By 1am the power was still at 7%, yet again more power rods were to be raised. A detrimental decision to disable the automatic shutdown decision was decided, so operators could continue to work under low power conditions. If something terrible were to happen, the system would not automatically shut down, which could cause a significant problem.
Engineers were continuing to raise control rods, by 1:23am, the power had reached 12%, seconds later power levels surged suddenly to extremely dangerous levels. The Chernobyl reactor began to severely overheat and the water coolant system began to turn to steam. At this point all but 6 control rods were removed from the...

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