US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
A fuel rod manipulator crane being positioned over the reactor core at the Trojan nuclear power station, Rainier, Oregon. Just to the right of the crane can be seen the new fuel rod ready for insertion. The top of the reactor core is under 35 feet of water, providing protection to the workers from the intense radioactivity from below. Fuel rods need replacing when their content of fissionable Uranium-235 has been used up, leaving non-fissionable Uranium-238 and various fission products inside the rod. The rod is then sent to a storage site until the contents may be reprocessed and enriched.
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