1994-08-25 - Re: Nuclear Weapons Material

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From: jdd@aiki.demon.co.uk (Jim Dixon)
To: mpd@netcom.com
Message Hash: 05fdece51909c099586f9b61e58f82ba2cd0be7ee924505254b11d3b08390bb5
Message ID: <7846@aiki.demon.co.uk>
Reply To: N/A
UTC Datetime: 1994-08-25 18:39:40 UTC
Raw Date: Thu, 25 Aug 94 11:39:40 PDT

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From: jdd@aiki.demon.co.uk (Jim Dixon)
Date: Thu, 25 Aug 94 11:39:40 PDT
To: mpd@netcom.com
Subject: Re: Nuclear Weapons Material
Message-ID: <7846@aiki.demon.co.uk>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

In message <199408251633.JAA16087@netcom4.netcom.com> Mike Duvos writes:
> Uranium is not particularly radioactive, being a long lived alpha
> emitter.  This is true of plutonium and some other fissionable
> materials as well.  I can handle clad uranium or plutonium
> reactor or bomb components in complete safety with no protective
> clothing needed. The only hazard is from ingestion of the
> material, or from accumulation of decay products such as radon in
> a badly ventilated area.
> Workers in nuclear fuel fabrication facilities have been known to
> use small disks of plutonium sintered into a ceramic base as
> poker chips.

Is this true?  I mean, do you know it from personal experience?
I was told by what I considered to be reliable sources that plutonium
was extremely toxic.  Upon reflection, I am sure that this is the
word that was used: toxic, not radioactive.

By "clad", do you mean coated in lead?
Jim Dixon