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The Museum
        Like Oak Ridge, the Nevada Test Site, and Sandia, Hanford has a museum. It is proud of its heritage, and of the work that was done here. The local high school football team is named The Bombers, streets are named after generals, and even the docks at the park have supports shaped like missiles. My kind of people. The museum showcases the nuclear facilities, as well as the other achievements of the area. It also delves a bit into the history of the Manhattan Project.

We have all seen these on various television shows, and in science fiction movies. It is the manipulator are of a hot cell, used to handle radioactive, or other hazardous material. In a hot cell, the operator would generally be looking at his work area through several inches of leaded glass. What surprised me is that the system is not electrically controlled. The whole thing is run by muscle power, and balanced by cables, pulleys, and counterweights. Though it only offers a two finger grip, there is a surprising amount of controllability and flexibility to the system, as well as a good amount of feel and feedback. As an interesting aside, these manipulator arms were made in the little river town of Red Wing Minnesota.
  A look back at the hot cell mock up, showing the large observation window, as well as the small portholes used when really dangerous materials were being handled.
  The inside of the hot cell, something that you would not have wanted to see, when the unit was active.
  A closer look at the controller portion of the manipulator arm. It is said that after some practice, an operator could become nearly as skilled with one of these units, as with his own hands.
  The hot cell, showing both the inner and outer parts of the manipulator arm. Note how they exactly mirror each other.
  A future nuclear engineer, who can barely raise himself up to see into the cell, or reach the controller.
  Every worker in the town dedicated a full day's pay to the purchase of a B-17 aircraft, for the war effort. Little did they know at the time; but a B-29 would probably have been more appropriate, though it may have taken several day's pay to purchase such a craft. The B-29, Bock's Car, dropped an atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan, which was constructed of plutonium produced at Hanford.
  Mock up of a typical office, of the Hanford Engineering Works. These are all authentic furnishings.
  An assortment of WWII signs, found while excavating during clean up.
  Various other exhibits and displays showcase the history of what went on here, and what continues to go on here.
  An extruded fuel rod is shown near a photo and drawing of John F. Kennedy, who came to the site during his presidency, to inaugurate a new reactor, and congratulate the workers here, on their contribution to America's defense.
  The gift shop at the museum sells Geiger counters, as well as other items. I was sorely tempted to buy one; but was uncertain as to how it would have been received by the TSA, when attempting to fly home.
  There is also a natural history section here, though it is small in comparison with the sections dedicated to the nuclear aspect of the Hanford area.
  A radiation detector, along with a number of, sometimes surprising, radiation sources. You can also use the want to see how much radiation you body, and personal items give off.
  Local kids learning about radiation, in one of the room son the lower level of the museum. Many, if not most, of these kids will grow up to work at the site, and make careers out of the clean up operations.
Old time, fallout shelter Geiger counters are used, from The Cold War.

A mock up of a graphite reactor, probably the B Reactor.

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