“ Think of a centrifuge cascade as a dense forest of six - foot tubes , thousands of tubes . Each centrifuge is enclosed in an outer casing , and inside it spins at a screaming seventeen thousand revolutions a minute , perfectly balanced . Gaseous , radioactive feed stock is pumped in , and the centrifugal force separates lighter uranium - two - thirty - five , which is pumped out and fed to the next centrifuge in line and so on , in a repetitive , purifying cascading process .
“ A cascade hall has to have a floor that’s both level and flat to within one ten - thousandth of an inch over many square feet , ” ... said Barnes . “ Frost heaves , small tremors , or major quakes , the floor adjusts , stays level ; the cascades in Hall C keep spinning . ”
“ WP has a very low ignition point — about eighty - six degrees Fahrenheit — but it burns at five thousand degrees . ”