PSU reactor leak no threat to people, officials say
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STATE COLLEGE, Pa.-- Penn State workers searching for what the university called a minor leak of slightly radioactive water from a pool at the school's nuclear research reactor plan to drain part of the pool to try to find the problem.
Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman Neil Sheehan said Friday that the university has 15 people working on the leak discovered Tuesday and is looking to bring in outside help.
University officials have said that the leak in the 71,000-gallon pool that shields the core's radiation and cools the reactor poses no risk to students, employees, the community or the environment.
Someone drinking the contaminated water for a year would be exposed to only half the amount of radiation deemed safe by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and less than half the amount received from a conventional X-ray, the university said in a statement.
The reactor is used for research by nuclear engineering undergraduate and graduate students and by 20 to 30 other departments on campus but does not produce electricity, according to the reactor facility's Web site.
First Published October 13, 2007 11:13 am