An engineer from a French nuclear power plant studied a uranium sample from Gabon’s Oklo mine and discovered the U235 isotope, which can sustain a nuclear reaction.
Physicists from different nations gathered in Gabon to investigate what was going on in the Oklo mine, and discovered a natural-looking nuclear reactor beneath.
The reactor began 2 billion years ago and has been in operation for 500,000 years, according to physicists. These findings were made public during an International Atomic Energy Agency meeting.
Scientists doing studies in Oklahoma discovered fission and fuel waste leftovers near the mine. What’s remarkable is that plutonium was generated by a nuclear process that regulated itself over a long period of time.
Scientists believe the mine was a natural reactor, and that water moderated the nuclear reaction in the same way as graphite and rhodium bars do in contemporary nuclear reactors to keep them from exploding.
The main question is who was able to enrich uranium over 2 billion years ago because U235 isotopes only occur through uranium enrichment operations, not natural processes.
Watch the video below for additional details on this bizarre discovery: