Nuclear reactor of K-19 submarine found in Kara Sea off Novaya Zemlya

A container with the nuclear reactor of the K-19 submarine was found in the Gulf of Abrosimov in the Kara Sea off the coast of Russia, the head of the Centrospas state central airmobile unit of the EMERCOM, Evgeny Lineytsev said, RIA Novosti reports. 

According to Lineytsev, the container was found by specialists of EMERCOM divisions Centrospas and Leader with the assistance from the Institute of Oceanology of the Russian Academy of Sciences during a mission to search for sunken radioactive objects. 

"The Akademik Mstislav Keldysh scientific vessel reached the set point and anchored in the area of the entry to the Gulf of Ambrosiev off Novaya Zemlya archipelago... The container was discovered as a result of sonar survey,” Lineytsev said.

Experts will conduct a visual inspection and spectral analysis of the found object. They will also collect flora material from it for analysis.

Numerous objects had been buried in the gulfs of the Kara Sea after nuclear tests on Novaya Zemlya. According to the EMERCOM, as many as 1,200 dangerous radioactive objects, including parts of submarines and nuclear icebreaker Lenin, may rest on the bottom of the Novaya Zemlya depression. All in all, over 24,000 items are included in the register of potentially dangerous underwater objects in Russia's internal waters and territorial seas.

The K-19 submarine, known in the navy as Hiroshima, was launched in 1959 and became the first nuclear missile carrier of the USSR. A number of deadly accidents had occurred on board the submarine during its service. One of them was a nuclear reactor breakdown in 1961. In 1990, the nuclear submarine was decommissioned.