Vassili Nesterenko

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Vassili Nesterenko

Vassili Nesterenko (2 December 1934 – 25 August 2008) was a Soviet and Belorussian physicist from Ukraine and a former director of the Institute of Nuclear Energy at the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (1977-1987).[1] He was born in Krasny Kut Village, Luhansk Oblast, Ukraine. He had a diploma from the Bauman Moscow State Technical University. He worked on the consequences of the Chernobyl disaster.

Since 1990, he had been the director of the Belarusian Independent Institute of "Belrad", created in 1989 with the help of Andrei Sakharov, Ales Adamovich and Anatoly Karpov.[2]

Because of his activities, he lost his job and got problems with the State Security Agency of Belarus, which threatened him with internment in a psychiatric asylum. Later, however, the Belarusian government tried to soften him proposing him to get back a job in a state institute, "at the condition that he would not work on Chernobyl anymore." He escaped two assassination attempts.[3]

Work in Chernobyl[edit]

Nesterenko intervened immediately after news of the accident in the nuclear power plant started to spread. As an expert on the subject and with his experience as a fire fighter, he threw liquid nitrogen containers from a helicopter on the burning reactor core. To do this he had to move into the middle of radioactive smoke. Despite the heavy radioactive contamination of the area, Nesterenko survived. However, of the four passengers of his helicopter, three died from radioactive irradiation and contamination.[3]

In 1990 Nesterenko founded the Institute of Radiation Safety (BELRAD), which carries out "radiation monitoring of the inhabitants of Chernobyl zone and their foodstuffs, development of measures on maintenance of radiation safety and protection of the population on territories, contaminated by radionuclides by realization of necessary scientific researches, development and organization of implementation of their results in practice."[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://nasb.gov.by/eng/news/news2009dec.php
  2. ^ Le Crime de Tchernobyl, le Goulag nucléaire, de Wladimir Tchertkoff, Actes Sud, avril 2006. p. 155.
  3. ^ a b Le Crime de Tchernobyl, le Goulag nucléaire, de Wladimir Tchertkoff, Actes Sud, avril 2006.
  4. ^ http://belradinstitute.boom.ru/frameeng.htm