Archive

Posts Tagged ‘reactor’

Best Leave Some Things to the Professionals…

August 3, 2011 3 comments

A man in Sweden with a penchant for science and chemistry was arrested for attempting to split atoms in his basement.

Einstein would be so proud.

Apparently Richard Handl even kept a blog about his efforts to build a nuclear reactor in his home. Unfortunately, it is illegal for civilians to own this kind of radioactive material, which included uranium, americium and radium.

With good reason. This stuff can be quite a health hazard, which makes me wonder how he got the stuff in the first place…

In any case, Mr. Handl eventually thought it might be a good idea to ask the Sweden’s Radiation Authority if it was alright if he went ahead and kept some fissionable around his place and, y’know, fission it. (Yes, I used “fission” as a verb. Deal with it.)

Although it is a bit amusing, Mr. Handl faces up to 2 years in jail for his experiment.

Said Handl,

From now on, I will stick to the theory

Nuclear Fission Explained…With Skittles and Mouse Traps

March 24, 2011 Leave a comment

Thanks to Pharyngula for posting this. Awesome!

Radiation From Japan Reaches Canada. RUN! PANIC! AAAAAH!

March 22, 2011 2 comments

File:Radiation symbol alternate.svgOne day, I think I’m going to open up a news website or newspaper and there is going to be a front page headline that reads “LOOK OUT BEHIND YOU!”.

This is getting ridiculous.

New outlets, including CBC, ran an article today and yesterday about increasing radiation levels detected in Canada and in Iceland. The cause of this radiation is attributed to the crisis with the nuclear power plant in Japan. So just how big of an increase in radiation was there in British Columbia?

Gary Holub says increased radiation levels were expected, and are less than the increase in radiation levels Canadians would see naturally when it rains.

Holub stressed that the increase poses no health risk to Canadians.

Seriously? Less of an increase than when it rains? Yet the CBC chose to run a headline which said: “Increased Radiation Detected by B.C. Monitors“.

Scientific American reported what the U.S. Energy Department and the Environmental Protection Agency had to say about the increase in radiation.

They said the radiation amounted to one-millionth of the dose rate that a person normally receives from natural sources such as rocks, bricks and the sun.

This increased level of radiation is not even newsworthy, let alone worthy of a scaaaaaaaary headline. Everyone on this side of the pacific ocean has nothing to worry about.

Actually, unless you are one of the heroic Japanese workers trying to restore power to the nuclear plant, you have very little to worry about.

Does nobody remember that there were victims of an earthquake AND tsunami in Japan recently? Are we only paying attention to the nuclear plant now because news outlets love the fear generated by the word “radiation”?

Donations to the Japanese relief effort can be made through The Canadian Red Cross

Other places to make donations can be found here.