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OPB airs new documentary on history of Hanford Nuclear Reservation

Oregon Public Broadcasting is set to air a one-hour “Oregon Experience” video documentary on the history of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. The complex near Richland, Wash. is the site of one of the world’s most expensive environmental cleanups and a huge repository of nuclear waste.

The television program tracks the history of the nuclear complex, starting in 1943, when it became a vital but highly secret player in the U.S. war effort. Hanford was the nation’s manufacturing site for plutonium, one of three major components for the atomic bombs dropped over Japan in 1945 and led to the Japanese surrender.

Hanford was shot on location, and includes footage inside the B-reactor there, the first full-scale nuclear reactor in the world, now being preserved as a National Historic Landmark.

OPB will air the show Monday, Sept. 16, at 9 p.m. That day, OPB’s “Think Out Loud” radio talk show will discuss the environmental cleanup effort and related Hanford topics.

A special preview showing of the documentary will take place in Richland on Thursday, Sept. 12, at 7 p.m., at the public library there.