How many companies you reckon have a secret nuclear uranium enriched reactor hidden in the basement? I bet you didn’t imagine Kodak would be on that list. And yes, Kodak is a company that produces cameras and printers, so what exactly it has been doing with a nuclear uranium enriched reactor for 30 years?
A report by Democrat and Chronicle reads that a unit belonging to Eastman Kodak has been keeping a nuclear uranium enriched reactor for more than 30 years within its quarters. The report also reads that the facility kept some 3 ½ pounds of uranium for weapons too. It makes one wonder what is a private company doing with weapons-grade uranium and a small nuclear reactor?
Miles Pomper with the Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Washington and Neil Sheehan, Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman, say that it is very rare for private companies to carry such devices. Still, one cannot help wonder how many other private companies are packing similar devices and uranium within their facilities?
Pomper called it “an odd situation because private companies just don’t have this material” and nobody in the city and state of New York had any idea what the Eastman Kodak unit was packing. That is, at least on the record. The news about Kodak’s secret nuclear uranium enriched reactor came from an ex-employee.
The report claims that Kodak was using its in house nuclear reactor to undertake radiography tests and check chemicals. And the company’s officials are now openly admitting they never informed the public about what they were packing. So, the next obvious question is where would Kodak get a nuclear uranium reactor?
Neil Sheehan, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman, told LA Times that we’re talking about “a unique type of device”. Apparently, the U.S. Department of Energy had one like that and from Sheehan’s statement it seems these two were the only such devices ever to be made.
The spokesman also explained LA Times that the uranium found at the Eastman Kodak facility in New York was the kind used in nuclear weapons. Sheehan said that Kodak was carrying 1,582 grams of enriched uranium 235.