Friday, September 10, 2021

First town powered by atomic power

Lost River Motel in Arco, ID.

South of Arco, ID, on a plain devoid of trees and towns lies the 900 square mile National Engineering Laboratory, known now as the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), most of which is closed to the public.  

A historical marker boasts that since 1949 more nuclear reactors (over 50) have been built here than anywhere else in the world.  I believe only 3 are still active. The INL is currently one of the leading nuclear laboratories.

This sign and "atom" sculpture welcomes people to Arco.

The sign in the City Park  highlights Arco's place in history.  The nuclear lights in Arco were only on temporarily but they paved the way for the commercial use of nuclear power.  The Arco reactor later suffered a partial melt-down, another world's "first."  There is no road sign bragging about that!

The Craters of the Moon/Alco campground.  A great place to stay while visiting Craters of the Moon.

Can you find the year you graduated from high school?  Zoom in on this picture or the one below.

This trail/road runs down "Number Hill."  Hopefully it's for ATVs!

One of several restaurants in the town of Arco, population 771.

The city park of Arco has a Veteran's Memorial, the tail of a nuclear warship, a nuclear missile, a museum, and a containment canister that states it has never held radioactive materials. 

One project worked on at the INL was the Submarine Thermal Reactor, like that used in the Hawkbill submarine. The Hawkbill 666 was known as "The Devil Boat."

Nuclear missile

Where are the Piepers now?  Arco, ID

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