The building for the storage of high-level radioactive waste is a striking orange bunker located in the middle of COVRA’s grounds. The HABOG was designed by the artist William Verstraeten. Every twenty years the building will be painted a tinge lighter, until in one hundred years it is white. The structure’s colour will gradually become less intense, in the same way that in time, the heat and radiation produced by the waste stored inside will gradually decrease. The building thereby reflects the concept of radioactive waste in an accessible manner.
In 2017 the orange bunker acquired a blue sister: VOG-2, a new storage building for depleted uranium. The building is bright blue with a few orange stripes, and 15-metre long stainless steels pipes sticking out of the roof edge at three corners of the building. These pipes make VOG-2 the biggest sundial of Europe. This too is a reference to the time factor, which ultimately renders radioactive waste harmless. The VOG-2 was designed by William Verstraeten.
... and de preservation of art
The storage building for low-level and intermediate-level radioactivity is protected and has a controlled climate. In actual fact, everything that a depot needs. For this reason, COVRA has made the space that is unusable for the storage of waste available to Zeeland museums. For the coming hundred years the storage building will also function as a museum depot, with various objects of art displayed between the containers of radioactive waste.
Between the barrels with radioactive waste there is also a display case with a very special content: the radium preparation that Marie Curie took a hundred years ago by train from Paris to the Netherlands to study the effect of temperature on radioactivity.
Did you know that …
… since 2005 exhibitions are also held in the hall of COVRA’s office building? The expositions change every quarter. On workdays between 08.00 and 17.00 hours the expositions are freely accessible.