Guests are invited to delve into the atmosphere of the 50–70s of XX century, visit the offices of great scientists of that time and even build a reactor

The construction of the world’s first nuclear power plant saw a new page in the energy sector for humanity – a technological breakthrough to a new era. In the first years of its operation, the Obninsk NPP was considered as an experimental facility to develop first nuclear energy technologies, train specialists from the first commercial plants, crews of nuclear submarines and the Lenin nuclear icebreaker, as well as foreign specialists.

In 2009, the First NPP was turned into a museum and given the ‘Industry Memorial Complex’ status. Over the first 20 years, more than 60,000 people visited the complex. The large-scale renovation of the building and re-exposition of the ‘World's First Nuclear Power Plant’ memorial complex began in 2023. It was necessary not only to preserve the original appearance of the premises and equipment, but also to implement new solutions based on modern multimedia technologies.

During this time, they renovated the building front, which now has memorial plaques, repaired stairwells, control room, radiation monitoring facility and other rooms, and installed new lighting equipment. The visitors will see restored unique stained glass windows, a monumental work of Soviet art of the 1960s installed in 1964 to mark the 10th anniversary of the world's First NPP. The work area totals about 40 m2. The restoration was carried out by specialists from the Glass Design Department of Stroganov Moscow State University of Arts and Industry lead by Associate Professor Olga Chistyakova, Head of the Department.

Historical items and interiors also got a new lease of life. The restoration team recreated the historical interior of the executive office where situation meetings held from 1954 to 2002 discussed various issues related to the NPP operation, and the plant specialists regularly took qualification tests. The detailed restoration of the furniture finalized the restoration of the office original appearance.

The basis of the new exhibition is the historical route for official delegations and visitors. It starts at the main hall with restored original architectural interior and ends in the reactor hall. The exposition demonstrates the role of outstanding scientists and leaders of the USSR Atomic Project – I. V. Kurchatov, E.P. Slavsky, N.A. Dollezhal, D. I. Blokhintsev, A. I. Leypunsky – in the design and construction as well as of those directly involved in the creation of the First NPP – B. S. Pozdnyakov, S. M. Feinberg, A. K. Krasin, B. M. Sholkovich, V. S. Emelyanov, A. I. Gutov, N. A. Nikolaev, A. N. Grigoryants, G. N. Ushakov, M. E. Minashin, D. M. Ovechkin. Modern multimedia and lighting technologies will allow visitors to delve into the atmosphere of time, making possible recreation of elements of the 50s–70s of the twentieth century.

The key part of the route is the power start-up of the NPP reactor in 1954 re-enacted in the control room. The participation effect is due to the sequential operation of the control devices, lighting and sound. The start command is re-enacted with genuine control devices.

The exhibition also features a new zone – the interactive game ‘Build a Reactor’, where visitors of different ages playing the game can get an idea of the main structural components of a nuclear reactor.

The experience of creating the first nuclear power complex helped determine the format for the future use of nuclear reactors both in the energy sector and in other areas including nuclear medicine and space development. Design and operation of nuclear superheat reactors for the first units of the Beloyarsk NPP and Bilibino ATPP, creation of a transportable nuclear power plant TPP-3, development of Buk and Topaz space nuclear power plants and power plants with a metal coolant for the nuclear submarine fleet, as well as of currently operating fast neutron reactors, production of isotopes for various purposes – this is a part list of the developments that the updated museum exposition demonstrates.

Сlick the link to register in order to sign up for an excursion to the world’s First NPP.

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June 26, 2024 marks the 70th anniversary of the world's First nuclear power plant startup in the USSR. Built on the premises of «В» Laboratory, currently A. I. Leypunsky Institute of Physics and Energy. (IPPE JSC, belongs to Rosatom’s scientific division) in the city of Obninsk near Moscow in record time (3.5 years), a small nuclear power plant is a symbol of the peaceful use of nuclear energy. The AM reactor unit was in operation for 48 years. On April 29, 2002, the reactor of the world's First NPP was shut down. The last fuel assembly was unloaded in September 2002.

The Russian government and regional authorities are making significant efforts to develop tourism infrastructure in the regions. In the new consequences, developed tourism is a prerequisite for the domestic market growth and, in general, for sustainable economy. Industrial tourism can become a driver for the formation of a popular comprehensive regional tourism product.