On This Day In Chemistry

November 4th

The Oak Ridge National Laboratory nuclear reactor “went critical” on this day in 1943

This was the world’s second nuclear reactor to achieve this status. However, from then on the reactor performed flawlessly. With a self-sustaining reaction, it produced a third of a ton of irradiated uranium (U) a day. The world’s first few grams of plutonium (Pu) were produced in just two months.

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