Dean found this amazing footage of the BORAX experiments done at Idaho National Lab in the 1950’s. The “reactors” are scaled down models of a boiling water reactor.
“This series of tests began with the BORAX-I nuclear reactor, which proved Samuel Untermyer II‘s 1952 theory that a reactor using direct boiling of water would be practical, rather than unstable, because of the bubble formation in the core. Subsequently the reactor was used for power excursion tests which showed that rapid conversion of water to steam would safely control the reaction. The final, deliberately destructive test in 1954 produced an unexpectedly large power excursion that “instead of the melting of a few fuel plates, the test melted a major fraction of the entire core.” ”
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