Six Decades of Atom-Smashing at NC State via Raleigh Public Record

July 27, 2011

Raleigh’s “First Temple of the Atom” sprang a leak in July.

North Carolina State University’s nuclear reactor made the national news when the university announced the pool cooling the reactor core had begun leaking.

The school’s nuclear engineering and research program has been making news of one sort or another ever since the 1950s, when NC State became the first university after World War II to operate an on-campus nuclear reactor.

The current PULSTAR reactor, which became operational in 1972, is the fourth the university has built. It’s one of more than 20 college reactors operating around the country.

The PULSTAR functions as a teaching tool for nuclear engineers and also as a radiation source for experiments at the Burlington Nuclear Laboratory.

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