The Hanford and B Reactor "story" consists of some of the richest and most significant historical accomplishments in the world. It is the story of a community with a singular commitment to ending World War II, of the Manhattan Project, the world's first full-sized reactor, and the Hanford Reach...the last free flowing, non-tidal stretch of the mighty Columbia River. It is the story of American Indian tradition, early farming techniques, and railroading. It is the story of environmental research and restoration. From the largest remaining shrub-steppe eco-system in the world, to an "Atomic City" built overnight...it is the story of sophisticated advancements carved from a rugged northwest territory. It is a unique story, and one that will capture the hearts and imaginations of all who visit. The heart of the story is of course the B Reactor. The Hanford Site's B Reactor was the first full-scale nuclear reactor to operate in world history. It was built by the Manhattan Engineer District (MED) of the Army Corps of Engineers, with the aid of the DuPont Corporation, to produce plutonium for the United States' military effort in World War II.
B Reactor has been recognized as a National Engineering Historic Landmark and a Nuclear Historic Landmark. It now joins Mount Rushmore and the White House as one of America's most important historic sites.
The Department of Energy hosts a limited number of public tours of historic Hanford and the B Reactor, reservations for tours fill up quickly. Once tours have filled they do start a waiting list.
For additional information about the B Reactor visit the B Reactor Museum Association's web site.