Ten students, working for ABC News, visited nuclear reactors on 25 college campuses and found many gaping security holes, prompting a federal investigation. Here's what the team found at the University of New Mexico.
Reactor Name: AGN-201 University of New Mexico
Fuel: Low-enriched uranium
Power Level: 0.05 kW. This is one of the nation's lowest power campus research reactors.
Began Operating: 1966
Location: A low, cement structure on the southwest corner of campus in between two engineering buildings, 100 meters from a major traffic intersection with Route 66.
Security Observations: A stand-alone bunker-like structure with push-button locks that require a numbered sequence code for entry. A vehicle was parked directly outside the building. There was no access inside the building but the facility's interior is visible through a glass window.
What We Found: Although this is one of the nation's lowest power campus research reactors, access here is highly restricted. Tours are not available. The Fellows were able to film unchallenged through a window in the front door, both day and night.
Comments from Interviews: Dr. Robert Busch, the chief reactor supervisor, said that security has always been tight and increased after the 9/11 attacks. Since then, no tours are available. He said the windows that look into the reactor facility are not a concern, but he would not elaborate. A security plan has been developed in conjunction with supervisory groups, he said.
Additional Comment: Steve Grove, one of the Carnegie Fellows who visited this facility said, "Our trip to New Mexico has not led us to believe there's much of a way to get into this reactor."
"We asked for a tour and he just flat out turned us down he said I'm sorry since September 11th we just can't do this kind of thing," Grove added.