The Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant Zone of Alienation is an officially designated exclusion zone around the site of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster. It is also commonly known as the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, the 30 Kilometre Zone, or simply The Zone.
Established by the USSR military soon after the 1986 disaster, it initially existed as an area of 30 km radius from the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant designated for evacuation and placed under military control. Its borders have since been altered to cover a larger area of Ukraine. The Chernobyl Exclusion Zone borders a separately administered area, the Polesie State Radioecological Reserve, to the north, in Belarus. The Chernobyl Exclusion Zone is managed by an agency of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine, while the power plant and its sarcophagus (and replacement) are administered separately.
The Exclusion Zone covers an area of approximately 2,600 km2 in Ukraine immediately surrounding the Chernobyl nuclear power plant where radioactive contamination from fallout is highest and public access and inhabitation are restricted. Other areas of compulsory resettlement and voluntary relocation not part of the restricted exclusion zone exist in the surrounding areas and throughout Ukraine.
The Exclusion Zone’s purpose is to restrict access to hazardous areas, reduce the spread of radiological contamination and conduct radiological and ecological monitoring activities. Today the Exclusion Zone is one of the most radioactively contaminated areas in the world and draws significant scientific interest for the high levels of radiation exposure in the environment, as well as increasing interest from tourists.
The city was evacuated on 27 April 1986, 30 hours after the Chernobyl disaster at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant which was the most disastrous nuclear accident in history. The power plant was within the Chernobyl Raion district. Pripyat, a city larger and closer to the power plant than Chernobyl, had been built as home for the power plant workers. After the accident, administration of the Chernobyl Raion district was transferred to the neighboring Ivankiv Raion. The city of Slavutych, built for those evacuated from Pripyat, received the population relocated from Chernobyl.
Today Chernobyl is mostly a ghost town, but a small number of people still reside in houses marked with signs stating: “Owner of this house lives here”. Workers on watch and administrative personnel of the Zone of Alienation are stationed in the city on a long-term basis. There are two general stores and a hotel for tourists.
The Pripyat town was found on the banks of the Pripyat River, 3 km from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on the February 4, 1970. In November 1985 the town population was 47,500. The average age was 26 years. Near the town there is a railway station Yanov (station Chernihiv-Ovruch). River navigation links the city with Kiev and other settlements on the Pripyat River and the Kiev reservoir.
During the construction of the city there were used innovative ways of building and architectural solutions. The city had 15 kindergartens, 5 schools, a music school, a vocational school, medical unit, three clinics, 27 canteens, cafes and restaurants, the Palace of Culture “Energetic”, a cinema “Prometheus”, numerous sports and cultural facilities.
After the Chernobyl disaster the town had been completely evacuated till 27-th of April 1986. Currently it is located on the territory of the Chernobyl exclusion zone, surrounded by a separate perimeter and has its own checkpoint. Although work on the decontamination of the city, in part successful but it has a population of 0 people because of the level of radionuclide contamination of the city is dangerous the peoples` health. In the first years after the accident, many buildings in the city were in use for decontamination and scientific companies, including the swimming pool. Still there are: laundry, water fluoridation station and garage of machinery.
First Ukrainian nuclear power plant is located in northern Ukraine in the Kiev region near the border with Belarus on the banks of the Pripyat River. Construction of the first plant (the first and second power units) was started in 1970, it began operation in 1977. The second stage (the third and fourth power units) was built in 1983. The construction of the third stage (the fifth and sixth power units) completed not.
April 26, 1986 at 1:23:59 during the design tests at the fourth power unit, explosion completely destroyed the reactor. The building was partially collapsed; the roof of the reactor building and the turbine hall was in fire, eliminated by 5 o’clock in the morning. As a result of the accident it was thrown about 380 million Curies of radioactive substances to the environment. During the explosion, one person died, another died this morning from injuries, 28 people from the fire station and staffs died of acute radiation sickness in the following months.
To mitigate the consequences of the accident in 1986, and in subsequent years has been involved 600 thousand people. The main task of the liquidators was to reduce emissions from the reactor, decontamination and the construction of the protective structure around the 4th block (“Shelter”). Its construction was completed on November 30, 1986. October 1, 1986 was again put into operation 1st unit, the 5th of November – 2nd December 4 – 3rd. Construction of the 5th and 6th blocks was discontinued.
One of the most top secrets of the Soviet Union – “Duga 1” or so-called product “5N32”, was created to ahead the anti missile shield of the country. In total, the nuclear weapon race between the USSR and USA provoked construction of three antennas like that, at least publicly declared. The experimental object “Duga-H” was at Nikolaev (Ukraine); military garrison at 1,500 personnel at Chernobyl with the name of the complex “Duga 1” (Ukraine); receiving antenna complex in the village of Big Cartel, under the Komsomolsk-on-Amur (Russia).
Due the unique design the antenna was able to detect air targets in the western distance of 900 to 3,000 kilometers. Technological configuration of the complex had been divided into two antennas and auxiliary system “Circle”. The radar was created on the principle of a phased array antenna. At the heart of the military garrison there is the command center to control radar installation and training centers – to ensure proper training of officers. Truly monumental antenna «Duga 1» has a total length of about 700 meters in length. Low-frequency large antenna`s height is 150 meters, and the high-frequency- respectively 90 meters. The device worked in the frequency range 5-28 MHz. Auxiliary system back-inclined sounding “Circle” was designed to detect strategic bombers.
All our tourists can personally see this object in the tour. Touch the history of these places, touch (!) Duga-1 personally :), pass through the long corridors of cable systems, and to make great photos for personal archives can be very easy: just book a tour to the Chernobyl Zone with SunCity Travel LLC. Join of our Radioactive Team!
Rabbi Menachem Nochum Twerski of Chernobyl (born 1730, Narynsk, Volhynia – died 1798, Chernobyl, Ukraine) was the founder of the Chernobyl Hasidic dynasty. He was a disciple of the Baal Shem Tov and the Maggid of Mezritch, and published one of the first works of Hasidic thought.
Orphaned as a child, he was raised by his uncle Rabbi Nochum, who sent him to be educated in one of the highly acclaimed yeshivot in Lithuania. After his marriage he earned his livelihood as a teacher of young boys, while continuing his intensive studies of Torah.
With the advent of Chassidism, Rabbi Nochum became a disciple of the Baal Shem Tov, the founder of Hasidism. After the Baal Shem Tov’s passing, R’ Nochum accepted the Maggid of Mezritch as his mentor. His book Me’or Einayim (Light of the Eyes) was published later in his life, and contains a collection of his teachings on the weekly Torah portions and selections of the Talmud. The book gained widespread acceptance as one of the major works of Hasidic thought.
You can visit a grave of Rabbi Menachem Nochum Twerski and old Jewish cemetery within our standard or individual tour to the Chernobyl Zone.