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What Could a Power Outage Mean for the Chernobyl Nuclear Reactor?

Nothing good has ever come out of a power outage.

In the already tense situation of the ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia, another piece of worrying news has come about. According to Ukrainian authorities, the Chernobyl Nuclear Reactor has been knocked off the power grid.

Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster is the world’s worst nuclear disaster and it would make anybody tense when they hear that the power grid of such a place went out. Today we talk about what could be the consequences of the case when there is no power in the Chernobyl nuclear reactor.

What Actually Happened?

A report came from the Ukrainian authorities that claimed that the decommissioned Chernobyl nuclear plant was knocked off the power grid. However, it was also reported that emergency generators were immediately put into action and are now providing backup power to the reactor.

What led to the power outage was not clearly found out however some officials claim the Russian invasion of Ukraine could be what led to the reactor getting knocked off from the power grid.

Who Controls the Reactor Currently?

The Chernobyl Nuclear was under Ukrainian authorities before the invasion started. However, Ukraine informed the International Atomic Energy Agency on February 24th that Russian troops had completely taken over all the facilities at Chernobyl.

Latest report claim that Russian troops have currently entered the 19 miles or 32 km exclusion zone of Chernobyl and completely surrounded the perimeter of the nuclear plant. However, Russia claimed that the Chernobyl site has been jointly secured by Russian troops and the Ukrainian national guard but Ukraine denied the claims and said that Russian troops have completely taken over.

Consequences of a Power Outage

According to the state communications agency, a power outage at the reactor could put the current cooling process of the nuclear material at risk and the outcomes would be disastrous if the cooling process was halted.

In the latest report from Ukrenerho, the Ukrainian grid operator claimed that the nuclear regulator indicates that all the facilities at Chernobyl are out of power and the backup diesel generators only have the fuel to provide energy for just 48 more hours.

They added: “Without power, the parameters of nuclear and radiation safety cannot be controlled”. Dmytro Kuleba, the foreign minister said that the power grid supplying electricity has been damaged and he also called for an immediate ceasefire between the two countries and work on repairs.

The Chernobyl plant is completely dependent on outside sources of electricity and cannot generate the electricity it generates to power itself like other operating nuclear power plants. Since there are no working reactors, a meltdown is out of the equation but the ruins left from the 1986 disaster still have some considerable risks.

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