A Kingston University researcher has secured access to one of Russia’s once highly secret nuclear power plants, as the nation looks to shed light on the legacy of its Cold War past.
Dr Egle Rindzeviciute, researcher and lecturer in Criminology and Sociology at Kingston University, was granted entry to a number of the country’s nuclear heritage sites as part of an international team of academics investigating the impact of the nuclear industry across Russia, Ukraine, France and Sweden.
Dr Rindzeviciute explored the archives of the Polytechnic Museum in Moscow and gained access to the world’s first commercial nuclear power plant in Obninsk, a city situated about 70 miles from Moscow. Once shrouded in secrecy, the site lay at the heart of the nation’s nuclear weapon planning during the Cold War era – a period of history following the Second World War when tensions ran high between Russia and the United States as both countries ramped up their nuclear arsenals.
Seventy years on, the Obninsk Institute of Nuclear Physics and Power is now developing a memorial complex dedicated to celebrating the origins of nuclear energy in Russia.