Feb. 20th, 2017

vladlitovchenko: (Default)
A massive spike in radioactive Iodine-131 over Scandinavia has sent governments scrambling to find the cause. Radiation monitors are recording 4x increases in radioactive Iodine-131 which can only come from either a Nuclear Bomb Test, or a reactor accident. The nuclear half-life of Iodine-131 is eight days, so this is an absolutely recent incident.

A U.S. Air Force WC-135 has arrived in the United Kingdom on its way to the Arctic to take samples and readings. The WC-135 Constant Phoenix is a special purpose aircraft derived from the Boeing C-135 and used by the United States Air Force. Its mission is to collect samples from the atmosphere for the purpose of detecting and identifying nuclear explosions. It is also informally referred to as the "weather bird" or "the sniffer" by workers on the program.

It is possible that Russia detonated Tactical nuclear Bomb in violation of the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, or suffered a nasty Naval Reactor Accident in Novaya Zemlya.

Spy satellites used for bomb blast detection do not monitor that part of the planet because there is nothing there to bomb; a perfect place to do an illegal test.


According of government officials in France, this comes on the heels of another four-fold spike in Iodine-131 detected in January. This second burst of Iodine-131 is leading experts to believe nuclear tests have been conducted. The IRSN reports:

Iodine-131 (131I), a radionuclide of anthropogenic origin, has recently been detected in the ground-level atmosphere in Europe. The preliminary report states it was first found during week 2 of January 2017 in northern Norway. Iodine-131 was also detected in Finland, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, France and Spain, until the end of January.

Iodine-131 is a radionuclide with a short half-life (T1/2 = 8.04 day). The detection of this radionuclide is proof of a rather recent release.

Besides the iodine release, the origin of which is still unknown, the poor dispersion conditions due to the thermal stratification [1] of the atmosphere also affected the observed concentration levels, including those of naturally occurring radionuclides such as Lead-210 (210Pb) [2], or fine particles (PM2.5 and PM10) leading to pollution episodes, particularly in the Western part of Europe during week 4 of January.

It must be pointed out that only particulate iodine was reported. When detectable, gaseous iodine is usually dominant and can be estimated to be 3 to 5 times higher than the fraction of particulate iodine. (SuperStation95 Editor's Note: Particulate comes from explosions, while gaseous can come from reactor operations. So the fact that particulate has been found is evidence of a detonation.)

In France, particulate 131I reached 0.31 µBq/m3 and thus the total (gaseous + particulate fractions) can be estimated at about 1.5 µBq/m3. These levels raise no health concerns.

The data has been shared between members of an informal European network called Ring of Five gathering organizations involved in the radiological surveillance of the atmosphere. In France, IRSN is responsible for monitoring the radioactivity of the atmosphere on a nation-wide scale. Its surveillance network OPERA-Air includes high-volume aerosol samplers (700 to 900 m3 of air per hour) and measurement equipment capable of detecting trace amounts of radioactivity.


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