ANCIENT AFRICAN NUCLEAR REACTORS

17 OCTOBER
2002: ANCIENT AFRICAN NUCLEAR REACTORS

Oklo:
Ancient African Nuclear Reactors


Credit & Copyright:
Robert D. Loss, WAISRC


Explanation: The remnants
of nuclear reactors nearly two billion years old were found in the 1970s
in Africa. These reactors are thought to have occurred naturally. No natural
reactors exist today, as the relative density of fissile uranium has now
decayed below that needed for a sustainable reaction. Pictured above is
Fossil Reactor 15, located in Oklo, Gabon. Uranium oxide remains are visible
as the yellowish rock. Oklo by-products are being used today to probe the
stability of the fundamental constants over cosmological time-scales and
to develop more effective means for disposing of human-manufactured nuclear
waste.


THANKS: O. K.!