Please select any photo in the galleries for a larger version and descriptive caption.
The mercury-vapor lights in the ChNPP turbine hall barely turn on in the freezing darkness of Ukrainian winter, emitting a harsh buzz but only weak, jaundiced illumination. With no climate control (the on-site heating plant is shut down because the fuel needed comes from Russia and is prohibitively expensive), corrosion has set in on every available surface. Across the turbine decks, in vast heaps, lie demounted valves, piping, bearings, casings, and of course, pieces of the turbines themselves, all of it too radioactive to go anywhere else but here. Made in Ukraine at the Kharkov Turbine Factory (now Turboatom), the vast machines are destined to rust away while similar turbines continue to turn at more auspicious nuclear power plants throughout the former USSR.
Remains of a low-pressure double-flow turbine rotor in the dark, freezing Turbine Hall at Chernobyl.
Eastward view toward No. 4 Turbogenerator in the ChNPP Turbine Hall. If you look at the roof paneling above TG-4, you can see that it is a different (lighter) color. This is the part of the roof that collapsed in October 1991, when an electrical accident and subsequent fire destroyed the generator. Unit 2 never operated again. The red tank is for lubricating oil.
View westward toward the TG-5 turbogenerator belonging to Unit 3 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant.
Disassembled turbine parts, including blades and bearings, lie strewn about the Chernobyl turbine hall as the power plant undergoes decommissioning.
Entrance to the Turbine Hall on the +10m elevation from the Deaerator Building, between Unit 2 and Unit 3.
Highly radioactive support elements from the striped ventilation chimney that once stood between the Units 3 and 4 reactor buildings are now stored temporarily in the Turbine Hall, adjacent to TG-5.
Rusting remains of a steam turbine lie on the floor of the Turbine Hall at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant.
Feedwater pumps belonging to Unit 2 at ChNPP. A fire in 1991 cause the turbine hall roof to fall on the pumps, disabling them all (and their emergency backups). The damage was repaired and the protective metal roof seen here was installed over the feedwater pump well to prevent a recurrence of similar accidents. However, Unit 2 was never operated again.
Unit 2 condensate pump well next to No. 3 Turbogenerator at Chernobyl.
Part of a turbine shaft belonging to TG-3 stands next to a decommissioned control station for the machine. The Turbine Hall is not climate controlled, and condensing humidity is causing rusting on many surfaces.
Sergey Krivtsun, a 30-year veteran turbine operator at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, was working in Unit 1 in 1986.
In addition to the turbogenerators, the turbine hall also contains condensate and feedwater machinery, some of which may be seen in the photos in the gallery here. The hall is being temporarily used to store radioactive structural components of the highly-contaminated ventilation stack that once stood between the Units 3-4 reactor buildings. Click below to watch a Bionerd video about the turbine hall: