Backyard Atomic Science

These are conditions that regulatory agencies never envision. It’s simply presumed that the average person wouldn’t have the technology or materials to experiment in these areas. State and local governments in the US employ specialists and maintain the equipment to safely handle minor cases of the release of radioactive materials. But sometimes these specialists, such […]

Read more "Backyard Atomic Science"

Nuclear Electromagnetic Pulse FAQ

Let’s say you are the leader of some nation with little regard for the lives of others, including citizens of your own nation, and have a small number of thermonuclear weapons along with some high performance missiles. You want to cause something dramatic and unusual with your limited capabilities. Maybe you are an Evil Overlord or […]

Read more "Nuclear Electromagnetic Pulse FAQ"

Nuclear Friday: Is Japan Ready?

As you might imagine, the Japanese public is quite troubled about the current situation between North Korea and the United States. There was similar concern during the last stand off between North Korea and the US which was just last Fall, but the Japanese government did not consider that situation serious enough to issue Civil […]

Read more "Nuclear Friday: Is Japan Ready?"

Nuclear Friday: Polonium

I’ve written before about the strengths and weaknesses of radioactive materials as a terrorist weapon, but what about using radioactive materials as a tool of assassination? Turns out there aren’t very many good options. Any material that would be deadly in a single dose would be difficult to acquire and most would present a serious risk […]

Read more "Nuclear Friday: Polonium"

Nuclear Friday: The Three Carbons

Carbon, atomic number 6, has three naturally occurring isotopes with atomic masses of 12, 13, and 14. The relative abundance of these three isotopes in a sample of material can reveal many secrets. We can tell how fusion works in stars from carbon isotopes. Carbon can reveal the source and age of organic molecules. Carbon can tell […]

Read more "Nuclear Friday: The Three Carbons"

Nuclear Friday: Poetry SLAM

The mid 1950’s to early sixties were the glory days of American nuclear experimentation.  Almost any application of nuclear weapons that could be thought of would be investigated. And not just with a mere concept review. No, the nuclear labs and their affiliates in universities and industry received the funds and personnel to realize their creative […]

Read more "Nuclear Friday: Poetry SLAM"