Re: Depleted Uranium dangers

Posted by Amaranth Rose on Dec 30, 2001 at 16:12 (

Re: Depleted Uranium dangers (bobbapink)

"But exposure to materials with long half lives means less risk since the material is emitting less frequently. "

If you believe this, I have a prime deal for you on some New Mexico oceanfront property.

Let's put it another way: You go to bed with your half a Curie of Uraniun, I'll go to bed with half a Curie of something that emits the same decay particles but with a half-life of, say, twelve hours. I wake up after twelve hours with a quarter of a Curie of radiation; You've still got so close to half a Curie it isn't funny. In ten days, I've got one over two to the fortieth of a Curie in my bed with me, and you've still got so close to half a Curie it makes no difference. It will take a period of time equal to twenty times the half life of uranium (which unfortunately escaped me at the moment) before your uranium is emitting as little ionizing radiation as my substance did in ten days.

"That may be true with materials with a very long half lives emit less frequently, making exposure to them less risky."

It's not the frequnecy of the emission (half-life), it's the quantity of emissions over time (Curies) that matters when you're talking about exposre. The other factor is energy and type of particles emitted, but I stipulated that that was the same initially in order to level the playing field.

Care to re-evaluate your statement above?

I think you've been misled, my friend.

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