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Subject: A bit of good news
SGTObvious    1/7/2004 8:45:39 AM
The one "Spike" picked up on a radiation sensor over the holidays was traced to a single radium pellet in a storage bin in Las Vegas. The pellet was of the kind designed for surgical implantation to treat uterine cancer- only a few grams. The detectors are now so sensitive that a tiny pellet with far less radiation output than any sort of lethal device is detectable, and that is an encouraging thought.
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hareron    RE:A bit of good news   1/7/2004 9:45:22 AM
The sarge is right on. I read of cancer patients being stopped in the Lincoln tunnel after undergoing radiation therapy.
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American Kafir    RE:A bit of good news   1/7/2004 6:37:33 PM
I wonder at what range the little radium pellet was detected, and if such detection technology can be placed in orbit as a permanent watchdog.
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NewGuy    RE:A bit of good news   1/7/2004 7:23:48 PM
Orbital ranges are simply too far to reliably pick up the levels/types of radiation given off by a typical nuclear device. NewGuy
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Elbandeedo    RE:A bit of good news   1/8/2004 11:00:53 AM
well, it all depends on the meaning of the word "orbit" - for instance, will that black helicopter circling just behind you do, or is a few hundred feet AGL in whisper mode still too high? ;-) (that's a joke, really!) E.
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American Kafir    RE:A bit of good news   1/8/2004 8:09:09 PM
Okay, maybe I'm in Star Trek mode, but if a hand-held device can track down a radium pellet to its precise location, that's pretty damned good. As far as black helicopters in whisper mode, that's a bit of overkill, considering their potential use as a get-out-the-vote impetus should the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy want to upset the Dean candidacy with a Kucinich surge right at Super Tuesday primary time. :0P
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evlstu    RE:A bit of good news   1/9/2004 1:07:55 AM
I read that the radiation detection gear were the size of "suitcases," so I'm thinking that it would look like a guy walking around with briefcase.
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American Kafir    RE:A bit of good news   1/10/2004 7:04:05 AM
>>I read that the radiation detection gear were the size of "suitcases," so I'm thinking that it would look like a guy walking around with briefcase<< Wearing dark sunglasses and a black hat and suit and tie, with a wire in his ear. ;-) (fnord)
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bsl    Radiation detectors   1/10/2004 5:55:20 PM's something to think about, based purely on information in the public record--- 1)Advanced physics has, for 3/4 of a century, conducted experiments in which observers used equipment to detect **single** particles or handful of particles at one time. 2)There has been around, for something like 40 years, a techology capable of detecting individual photons. This technology is so well developed that it's found, today, in consumer electronics. Indeed, charge-couple devices have been supplanted in some consumer electronics by even more advanced technology. What's a photon? It's the class of quantum particles which include visible light. Light is made up of photons from a specific band of frequencies (wavelengths, energies). There are photons of other frequencies, however, apart from visible light. For instance, gamma rays are photons of higher energy and shorter wavelength. As it happens, gamma rays are given off by all fissionable material. One more fact from the public record: when speaking of radiation shielding, it's customary to consider the thickness of any given substance needed to cut off half of the radiation given off by a source. The attentuation effect. This implies, clearly, that NO amount of shielding completely cuts off all radiation from radioactive materials. Especially not fissionable materials, which are highly radioactive, which means they give off a LOT of particles. Put this all together and draw your own conclusions.
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