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SCUBA DIVING :: FORUMS :: NEWS :: ATOMIC DIVER

CDNN: So you want to be an atomic diver?

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by KATHRYN KRANHOLD

Fuel rods
Fuel rods at a nuclear power plant

USA  (19 Jan 2007) — David Harner pulled on a fitted Lycra outfit with thin tubes snaking around his body carrying cold water and attached pencil-thin monitoring devices to his thighs, biceps, chest and back. Co-workers helped him into a red rubber suit and a helmet attached to an oxygen line.

Harner then lowered himself into a pool of warm water that had the faint, distant blue glow of fuel rods.

"Not everyone would want to jump in a nuclear reactor," Harner says. "It's a definite breed."

Harner, 33, belongs to a small corps of men and women who make their living in the underwater world of nuclearpower plants. Many first took up diving as a hobby, then attended commercial diving school. John Paul Johnston, executive director of Divers Institute of Technology in Seattle, says "the high-tech guys" are drawn to nuclear diving, rather than to other sorts of work, like offshore oil rigs...

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