Ever seen a picture of the Taiwan Research Reactor? Me neither!
Readers may know that I am very interested in the history of Taiwan’s nuclear weapons efforts, as well as the death of IAEA Inspector Pierre Noir (although I do not suspect foul play). If you are interested in the history of Taiwan’s bomb program, I can’t highly enough recommend David Albright and Corey Hinderstein’s “Nuclear Nightmare Averted” in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, along with the two document troves released by the National Security Archive (1|2). And, if Pierre Noir interests you, there is my research with Catherine Dill on the death of the IAEA inspector in 1978: 1|2|3.
A couple of years ago, I found the TRR in satellite images but never put it online. I recently gave the assignment to a student who got close, but couldn’t quite find it. So, here it is, just for the record.
It’s not much but, when combined with the information that the TRR is located at the Institute for Nuclear Energy Research (INER) and probably looks like the NRX Reactor at Chalk River, in Canada, it’s enough. Here is a (pretty terrible) map to the INER site:
The main gate to INER is located at: 24°51’27″N, 121°15’5″E. Once you have the location of INER (as well as the co-located Chung Shan Institute for Science and Technology), the rest is pretty easy. Just take a look around.
The TRR is located at: 24°51’20″N, 121°15’19″E Here is a satellite image you can match to the lousy illustration, as well as the pictures of the NRX. If you fool around with the historical imagery, you can even see external signs of the decommissioning work.