A curie is a rather large unit -- 36 billion disintegrations per second if memory serves me right. The radiation dose received is proportional to the product of the curie value and the energy of the individual disintegrations. Not all are equal - some gamma emitters exhibit 0.1 MEV decays, others 7-10 MEV decays. The latter are much more penetrating and harmful. Alpha decays have very high energy, but are easily stopped - they don't penetrate the skin. However, inside the body and lodged near fast reproducing cells, they can be very harmful in small doses.
georgeob1 wrote:So going back to Walter's advert, are you saying you can buy enough Po210 over the internet (for $69!) to kill someone? So the terrorists dont need to detonate a dirty radiological bomb to panic a city...they just buy some Po210, put it in some small packages that degrade in a few days, and go around targetting specific buildings or areas wherever they like. No wonder COBRA has been in session 6 times recently. Note to US Dept of Trade...it would be a really good idea if you discouraged pollonium sales. Especially to the general public.A curie is a rather large unit -- 36 billion disintegrations per second if memory serves me right. The radiation dose received is proportional to the product of the curie value and the energy of the individual disintegrations. Not all are equal - some gamma emitters exhibit 0.1 MEV decays, others 7-10 MEV decays. The latter are much more penetrating and harmful. Alpha decays have very high energy, but are easily stopped - they don't penetrate the skin. However, inside the body and lodged near fast reproducing cells, they can be very harmful in small doses.
There is a very wide variety of poisons that can be directly purchased or easily made from materials readily available even in Europe, and which are leathal iin very small doses, properly administered. Cyanide is an obvious example. Sarin , an early nerve gas, is widely though clandestinely, available, and, if I am not mistaken, some Japanese loonies attempted to release it in the Tokyo subway system a decade or so ago. Polonium is interesting only because, as a radioactive substance, it excited particular fear and revuksion in people.
Its not just that George. Enough Po210 to do the damage its done could only have come from a very well connected source, i.e. government. Litvinenko enjoyed British citizenship. It could therefore be interpreted as an act of war. Alternatively if the Po210 was not supplied by some government agency it means a criminal or terrorist organisation can obtain it. Thats even more alarming.
I will readily concede that unnatural mortality among professed critics of President Putin seems to be remarkably high at the moment. If you interpret the action as an act of war, what response would you wish to see????
Saddam Hussein had an earlier history of interest & investment in nuclear processing, as well as a well-organized WMD program. Most of it was destroyed during/after the Gulf war, but our intelligence still credited him with the intent to restore it. He had lots of money through the corrupt UN food program and had successfully bribed the French government to provide him cover and protection in the UN. We didn't find much after the invasion, but the materials could easily have been transferred to Syria or Iran just before hostilities (as Saddam did with his Air Force during the Gulf War.).
You appear to me to have applied a different standard to Iraq than you imply now. Perhaps you could hire Hans Blix to protect you.
Tony Blair said yesterday that no "diplomatic or political barrier" would be allowed to stand in the way of the investigation into Mr Litvinenko's death. At a press conference while en route to a Nato summit in Riga, Mr Blair said the death was being treated as a "very, very serious matter".
WHICH PARTS OF THE AIRCRAFT WERE CONTAMINATED?
This is a key question which authorities have not answered. If radiation was found in a lavatory, it could indicate that someone had ingested the poison. Anyone who ingested Polonium 210, as Litvinenko did, would almost immediately show traces of it in their urine. But if radiation was found in the aircraft hold, it could have leaked from a package. An independent British nuclear expert, John Large, said that would be surprising because the manufacture of Polonium 210 is a highly complex process suggesting the involvement of some kind of state agency. "If it was manufactured by the state, clearly it would have been packaged so it wouldn't leak." Another mystery puzzling experts is why as many as five aircraft may have been contaminated