The reactor hall of the Halden Reactor
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The reactor hall of the Halden Reactor
The Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA) has said that one of the country's research reactors suffered a leak of radioactive iodine on Monday.

It added that the leak was small and the focus now is on fixing the problem.

"The radioactive leak was due to a technical failure during treatment of the fuel in the reactor hall. Emissions are low," a statement from the NRPA said on Tuesday.

The leak is not expected to pose a health risk or danger to the environment outside the facility, the NRPA says.

The incident happened at 1:45pm local time on Monday at the Halden Reactor, located in Ostfold county in southeast Norway.

Those working at the reactor at the time of the incident were promptly evacuated when the alarm went off.

The Halden Reactor was built in 1955 and became operational in 1958. It is a boiling water reactor which is dedicated to research purposes. "[It] is regarded in many countries as a strategic asset for testing fuel and reactor components," according to data from the Norwegian Institute for Energy Technology. It runs at a maximum thermal power of 20 MW.

The leaked radioactive iodine has a radioactive decay half-life of about eight days. It can cause mutation and even death in cells it affects.