web analytics

Information Directory

Reference Directory

October 10, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 10th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 10, 2016 – VietNamNet Bridge – Devices monitoring radioactive sources in place by Oct 30 – Vuong Huu Tan, head of Viet Nam Agency for Radiation and Nuclear Safety, said the monitoring devices would help authorised agencies keep a close watch on radioactive sources and raise alerts if they are moved, or in case of emergencies. At a press conference held yesterday by the ministry of science and technology, Tan also said the installation started on October 1. Each monitoring device, made by the Ha Noi University of Science and Technology, costs around VND30 million (US$1,340). That is just half the price of such devices built by other countries. The decision to install monitoring devices was taken after several radioactive sources were reported missing earlier this year.

October 10, 2016 – Kalamunda Reporter – Testing time for Kalamunda veteran involved in nuclear test – KALAMUNDA resident Robin Lyons is eagerly awaiting the outcome of a meeting in Canberra between former national servicemen and the Department of Veterans Affairs for men who served in the Monte Bello Islands, north of Onslow. Mr Lyons was one of a number of seamen in the Navy at HMAS Leeuwin who were asked as part of their national service in the 1950s to travel on the HMAS Fremantle and HMAS Junee to the British test site, 70km off the WA coast, after the first atomic bomb test. “The HMS Plimb was anchored off the islands and a bomb located with the ship had vaporised it,” he said. “We were to anchor quite near this site. “When we were not involved with the stores run (replenishing supplies), we were able to volunteer to carry out work details on the island and some went ashore for recreation. “But at no time were we advised on how ‘hot’ the island was and we certainly were not given any preventative clothing.”

October 10, 2016 – Nature World News – Aliens Could Be Feeding on Cosmic Rays for Survival, Scientists Found – The rod-shaped bacterium called Desulforudis audaxviator was found 2.8 kilometers beneath a gold mine in South Africa. A scientist has found that the microbe survives on byproducts of radioactive uranium, thorium, and potassium in the depths of the mine since it doesn’t have access to light, oxygen, and carbon. The discovery led to the theory that alien life might be living in uninhabitable environments in the universe, feeding on cosmic radiation to survive. “It really grabbed my attention because it’s completely powered by radioactive substances,” Dimitra Atri, an astrobiologist and computational physicist from the Blue Marble Space Institute of Science in Seattle, Washington and author of the study, said in a report by Science.com.

October 10, 2016 – Renal and Urology News – ALP Decline in Radium-223 Recipients Predicts Better Outcomes – Declines in alkaline phosphatase (ALP) may predict better outcomes in patients receiving treatment with radium-223 for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC), according to study findings presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology 2016 congress in Copenhagen. As part of a prospective single-arm phase 3b study, investigators led by Daniel Heinrich, MD, of Akershus University Hospital in Lorenskog, Norway, studied 696 mCRPC patients who received at least 1 radium-223 cycle in an international early access program. At week 12, 398 patients (57%) had a confirmed decline in ALP from baseline and 298 (43%) did not.

October 10, 2016 – Parent Herald – Is there radon in your child’s school? What parents need to know – Back-to-school is in full swing. For parents, it means equipping children with the lessons and tools they need to stay safe. But there is one hidden danger that many parents are unaware of- radon, a colorless, odorless and radioactive gas. Recently, Portland Public Schools have been attracting national media with a report that officials found alarmingly high radon levels in more than 100 of its classrooms. This case is unfortunately too common. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), more than 70,000 schoolrooms in use today have high short-term radon levels. Despite these alarming facts, only about 20 percent of schools nationwide have done some form of testing for the deadly gas. So what exactly is radon, and how can parents protect their children against it?

October 10, 2016 – Ecns.cn – China to launch world’s first X-ray pulsar navigation satellite – The China Academy of Space Technology has announced plans to launch the world’s first X-ray pulsar navigation satellite (XPNAV-1) in November, Xinhua reported. The move brings autonomous spacecraft navigation and a more precise deep-space GPS one step closer to reality. X-ray pulsar navigation is an innovative navigation technique wherein periodic X-ray signals emitted from pulsars are used to determine the location of a spacecraft in deep space. Current ground-based navigation methods are limited by the time delay between spacecraft and the Earth. However, for certain type of pulsars, called “millisecond pulsars,” pulses of radiation occur with the regularity and precision of an atomic clock. As a result, in some scenarios, the pulsar X-ray can take less time to estimate a location. This leads to more precise measurements of a spacecraft’s location. However, since X-rays from pulsars are absorbed by the atmosphere, scientists must launch satellites to continue research of the new technology.

October 10, 2016 – PhysOrg – How deadly would a nearby gamma ray burst be? – Despite the obvious doom and gloom associated with mass extinctions, they have a tendency to capture our imagination. After all, the sudden demise of the dinosaurs, presumably due to an asteroid strike, is quite an enthralling story. But not all mass extinctions are quite as dramatic and not all have an easily identified culprit. The Ordovician extinction—one of the “big five” in Earth’s history—occurred around 450 million years ago when the population of marine species plummeted. Evidence suggests that this occurred during an ice age and a gamma ray burst is one of several possible mechanisms that may have triggered this extinction event. Gamma ray bursts (GRBs) are the brightest electromagnetic blasts known to occur in the Universe, and can originate from the collapse of the most massive types of stars or from the collision of two neutron stars. Supernovae are stellar explosions that also can send harmful radiation hurtling towards Earth.

October 10, 2016 – Astronauts heading to Mars risk developing dementia from cosmic rays – International Business Times – NASA astronauts who will travel to Mars may risk developing cognitive impairments and symptoms of dementia, due to cosmic radiation exposure. More immediately, the brain damages they sustained during deep space travel may also compromise critical decision making during their mission. NASA’s plan to send humans to Mars within the next two decades is arguably one of the most exciting goal for space exploration in the near future, but it will be a challenging one. The vast distances between Earth and the Red Planet and the dangers of such a long journey into space have been repeatedly highlighted, but less has been said about the adverse health effects of exposure to cosmic rays. In a study published in Scientific Reports, research has looked into the impact of such radiation on rodents, to learn more about the health risks astronauts may face on an extra-terrestrial adventure to Mars.

October 10, 2016 – Deutsche Welle – Hearing against Germany begins as investors seek damages for nuclear phase-out – An international arbitration court has begun a two-week hearing against the German government. A two-week hearing against the German state over its decision to phase out nuclear energy begins in front of an international arbitration court in the United States on Monday. The Swedish state-owned energy company, Vattenfall, is seeking around 5 billion euros in damages after the German parliament decided to shut down all nuclear plants by 2022 in the wake of the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan.

October 10, 2016 – WZZM 13 – Did we really ‘almost lose Detroit’ in nuclear mishap 50 years ago? – As Michigan and the nation’s energy profiles are poised to change dramatically in the coming decade, the 50th anniversary last week of the Fermi 1 nuclear plant mishap in Monroe County — the genesis for the book and song “We Almost Lost Detroit” — is a stark reminder that decisions on how to meet the economy’s energy needs are nearly always controversial and may bring unanticipated consequences. Fermi 1 was the worst nuclear accident at a U.S. commercial power plant in the years before Three Mile Island jolted the nation. There were no injuries or hazardous radiation released, but the incident provided an early argument against nuclear power as too dangerous, including speculation at the time that a crushed beer can in the works had caused the partial meltdown. The Fermi accident had many of the trappings of a Hollywood drama, including shadowy informants and a purported cover-up. Even then-Vice President Hubert Humphrey was in town at the time of the partial meltdown to dedicate the new Monroe County Public Library.

October 10, 2016 – i24News – Israel’s Dimona nuclear reactor to be renamed after late former President Peres – The Dimona nuclear reactor in southern Israel will be renamed in honor of the late former president Shimon Peres, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Sunday, in recognition of his contribution to Israel’s nuclear knowledge. “Shimon Peres worked greatly to establish this important enterprise, an enterprise which is important to the security of Israel for generations,” Netanyahu said, announcing the renaming of the Nuclear Research Center-Negev after Peres. “I think that it would be right and proper to rename the center after him,” Netanyahu said.

October 10, 2016 – airforcetechnology.com – USAF and NNSA conduct flight tests of mock nuclear weapons – The US Air Force (USAF) Global Strike Command and National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) have successfully conducted flight tests of mock nuclear weapons. The tests saw two separate B-2A Spirit stealth bombers from the 509th Bomber Wing drop joint test assemblies (JTA) of the B61-7 and B61-11. These trials were conducted to validate the performance of the JTAs in operationally representative conditions. NNSA military application principal assistant deputy administrator brigadier general Michael Lutton said: “The B61 is a critical element of the US nuclear triad and the extended deterrent. “The recent surveillance flight tests demonstrate NNSA’s commitment to ensure all weapon systems are safe, secure, and effective.” JTAs are mock weapons that contain no nuclear materials and are not capable of nuclear yield.

October 10, 2016 – Reuters – Belgian nuclear power reactor outages – Belgium has seven nuclear power reactors with a combined capacity of almost 6 gigawatts, which are operated by Electrabel, part of France’s Engie (formerly known as GDF Suez). Two of those reactors, Doel 1 and Doel 2, were scheduled to shut down at the end of this year but their lifespan has been extended to 2025. Nuclear power plants regularly stop production for maintenance or to refuel. They cut capacity gradually and it can take a few hours until output reaches zero. Unplanned outages can also occur when the operator takes the reactor offline or it shuts itself down.

October 10, 2016 – aa.com.tr – Nuclear power: its future debated at World Energy Cong. – Nuclear power investments and regulations along with the necessity in taking safety precautions in this industry were argued by a prominent group of speakers at the 23rd World Energy Congress (WEC) in Istanbul on Monday. Speaking at WEC, of which Anadolu Agency is the global communication partner for 2016, Wang Binghua, chairman at State Power Investment Corporation (SPIC) in China, said that the decision process in choosing the best technology, appropriate design and correct location were paramount. “Nuclear power has no frontiers. Security of a nuclear plant has no frontiers either. Any country which intends to develop nuclear energy needs to manage security problems and must consider the others [countries],” he said.

October 10, 2016 – Forbes – Trump Correctly States U.S. “Nuclear Program Has Fallen Behind” Russia’s – After the first hour of the second Trump-Clinton debate, I was beginning to worry that I wouldn’t be able to fulfill my assignment to write about the way that the candidates spoke about my coverage area. There was no mention of energy, clean energy, nuclear energy or climate change. Finally, at 1:02:40 on the YouTube video titled FULL: Donald Trump vs Hillary Clinton – Second Presidential Debate – Washington University 10/9/2016, Donald Trump made the following statement. “ …our nuclear program has fallen behind and they’ve gone wild with their program. Not good. Our government should not have allowed that to happen. Russia is new in terms of nuclear. We are old, we’re tired we’re exhausted in terms of nuclear. A very bad thing.

October 10, 2016 – Daily Times – Radiation leak briefly halts operations at Delhi airport – A suspected radioactive leak occurred on Sunday at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport from cancer medicines that were being transferred by an Air France Aircraft. However, officials confirmed that the leas was minor and within permissible limits and there had been no injury to anyone. Earlier, teams of the Indian National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) rushed to the spot after police were informed. Additionally, seven fire tenders and a HazMat (hazardous material) van were pressed into service, Indian media reported. The cargo area at the airport was cordoned off.

October 10, 2016 – Pickle – Avocados and bananas are radioactive — but it’s not anything to worry about – You might read new research measuring radiation emissions from everyday foods and panic that eating them will turn you into the Hulk. The study identified both avocados and bananas as radioactive — but you shouldn’t turf them out of your fruit bowl just yet. For starters, avos are way too expensive to just throw away. And more importantly, the point of the North Carolina State University study wasn’t to scare people — but rather to demonstrate that a teeny bit of radiation is nothing to worry about. “If you’re surprised that your fruit is emitting gamma radiation, don’t panic,” said Robert Hayes, an associate professor of nuclear engineering at North Carolina State University. “We did this study because understanding how much radiation comes off of common household items helps place radiation readings in context – it puts things in perspective.”

October 10, 2016 – VN Express – Vietnam wary as China commissions nuclear power plants near border – With the closest one less than 500 kilometers from Hanoi, experts urge Vietnam to keep an eye on what’s going on the other side. The Vietnam Atomic Energy Institute is calling for the development of a radioactivity surveillance system in northern Vietnam after China started operation at three new nuclear power plants close to the border. Nguyen Hao Quang, the vice director of the institute under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, said at a meeting last week that his organization has struggled to find funding for the system even though the government gave a nod to the project in 2010. The Chinese plants demand “emergency” actions, he said. “With the very strong nuclear activity in China across the border, we suggest that checkpoints be set up in the area to promptly detect any impacts,” Quang said.

October 10, 2016 – Daily Caller – Gov’t Red Tape Is Strangling American Nuclear Power – Government red tape is preventing the construction of new nuclear reactors and causing existing ones to shut down. Heavy government regulations combined with polices intended to support wind and solar power make it incredibly difficult to profitably operate a nuclear power plant, according to a study published Thursday by R Street Institute. Eventually, these regulations will cause nuclear reactors to shut down, which would increase carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. “Nuclear energy has been a historically low-cost, reliable source of energy,” Catrina Rorke, the study’s author, told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “What we’re seeing now are closures prompted by market signals, but layered over an industry that is substantially more burdened by regulatory requirements than in decades past.”

October 10, 2016 – Vermont Business Magazine – Vermont Yankee kicks off $143 million project for fuel storage – Vermont Yankee administrators waited two years for the state’s permission to build a new storage facility for nuclear waste at the defunct Vernon plant. When they finally received that permit in late June, they didn’t waste any time getting started. Entergy administrators last week said the construction of a spent fuel storage facility is well under way, with a few dozen contracted workers having recently installed a massive generator that will provide emergency power to the complex. Construction will continue into 2017. But officials say getting the generator in place was a “major milestone” as crews begin a $143 million effort to transfer all of the plant’s radioactive spent fuel into sealed casks.

October 10, 2016 – Philadelphia Inquirer – Judge rules in favor of Penn vs. brain-cancer victim; family plans appeal – A federal judge has found in favor of the University of Pennsylvania in a lawsuit brought by the estate of Jeffrey H. Ware, a neuroscientist who died of a rare brain cancer after exposure to radiation during his research at Penn. But his family’s attorneys say the case never belonged in federal court, arguing that Penn improperly invoked a law that governs nuclear power plants, not research laboratories, and has filed a notice of appeal. The family of Jeffrey Ware contends his brain cancer was caused by radiation exposure in his research job at the University of Pennsylvania. The lawsuit also contends that Ware was enrolled in a clinical trial at Penn without his informed consent, subjecting him to painful side effects well after there was any hope of remission. Ware, who studied the effects of radiation on animals to guide efforts to prevent cancer in astronauts, died of gliosarcoma in October 2011 at age 47. He lived in Haddonfield with his wife, Barbara Boyer, an Inquirer reporter, and their two daughters.

October 10, 2016 – Athens News Courier – BROWNS FERRY NUKE PLANT: Power increase request still under consideration – A request by the Tennessee Valley Authority to increase power being generated by three reactors at Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant is still under consideration, an official said Tuesday. TVA submitted a license amendment request to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in September 2015. The request seeks an increase of approximately 20 percent above the original licensed thermal power level and an increase of about 14.3 percent above the current power level. NRC Spokesman Scott Burnell said opposing groups have sought a hearing to voice opposition to the proposal and that NRC legal staff and TVA are in the process of filing a response. He explained the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board is just now beginning the process of examining all the legal points raised by all the parties. He said it would be “some time” before the board decides whether requirements for a hearing have been met.

October 10, 2016 – Reuters – FPL says Saint Lucie 2 Florida reactor shut ahead of Matthew – Florida Power and Light Co [NEEPWR.UL] said its 839-megawatt Unit 2 at the Saint Lucie nuclear power plant in Florida was shut Thursday morning as a precaution against Hurricane Matthew. The company did not specify when the unit would be back at full power. Meanwhile, the Turkey Point reactor was at 100 percent, according to the company. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has dispatched additional inspectors to the facilities and will activate its regional incident response center in Atlanta later on Thursday, the NRC said in a release on Thursday.

October 10, 2016 – Medhill Reports Chicago – Hiroshima exhibit documents the innocent victims of the atom bomb – Three colorful origami cranes made by school girl Sadako Sasaki, a survivor of the U.S. strike on Hiroshima, sit on display for the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Exhibition in Chicago. She folded nearly 1,000 cranes as a traditional prayer for healing before she died of leukemia 10 years after the bomb strike. She was 12 years old. Undergarments worn by 2-year-old Hiroo Taoda on the day of the 1945 bombing offer a stirring reminder of the thousands of innocent victims. Taoda was exposed to the bomb blast in front of Hiroshima Station and he died the same night.

“It is precisely those who had little to do with the war that lost their lives in the blink of an eye because of the atomic bomb,” said Kenji Shiga, director of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, at the opening of the exhibit here on October 1. He fervently hopes people who live in countries that currently possess nuclear bombs can be aware of this, he said.

October 10, 2016 – Fort Bliss Bugle – White Sands Missile Range holds Trinity Site open house – Judging by the license plates on vehicles at the Trinity Site open house at White Sands Missile Range Saturday, people came from all over the United States to see where the world’s first nuclear bomb explosion took place July 16, 1945. Barry and Dianne Lennox of New Zealand, however, might have traveled the farthest – more than 7,000 miles – and their visit was no spur of the moment side trip.

October 10, 2016 – Albuquerque Journal – Second rock fall discovered at WIPP – For the second time in a week, a section of collapsed roof was discovered in the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant underground. Both the first rock fall, discovered last Tuesday, and the one discovered yesterday were found in prohibited areas — meaning no personnel were allowed to enter — in the south area of the mine. The most recent incident was near Panel 3, which has been closed since February 2007. The rock fall was found during a weekly routine inspection that involves making visual observations from outside the prohibited area to ensure worker safety.

October 10, 2016 – CBS Denver – Debate Over Public Trails On Former Nuclear Weapons Site – Despite opposition, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is finalizing its plans to open up the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge to the public. Multiple trailheads, crossings, and parking lots have been funded as well as more than five miles of trails encircling the Department of Energy Legacy Site. “We’re really concerned about the amount of plutonium that’s in the environment from the former weapons plant,” said Alesya Casse a Board Member of the Rocky Flats Downwinders. About 100 people filled a community room in the controversial Candelas neighborhood to hear the FWS plans for moving forward with the opening of the wildlife refuge.

October 10, 2016 – KSL.com – Lambing bighorns, radiation and rocky terrain part of mine closure project – Helicopters and pack horses navigating the steep cliff faces of the San Rafael Swell were part of an ambitious effort carried out by state mining authorities to close more than 170 Cold War-era uranium mines. The effort by the Utah Division of Oil, Gas and Mining earned it the nation’s highest achievement award for eliminating physical safety hazards, recognition given by the National Association of Abandoned Mine Land Programs. “This is an honor to be recognized for our hard work,” said program administrator Steve Fluke. “It is the goal of the program to protect the public from the hazards of old mines.” The agency partnered with the Bureau of Land Management and the Emery County Public Lands Council in its initiation of the project, which also faced obstacles from lambing bighorn sheep, constraints imposed by designated wilderness areas and challenges from radiation safety protocols.

October 10, 2016 – San Luis Obispo Tribune – Diablo Canyon closure proceedings begin in San Francisco – State proceedings for the application to close the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant started off with a bang Thursday — or more appropriately, a gripe. Judge Peter Allen, the administrative judge handling the California Public Utilities Commission proceedings, criticized PG&E for “getting a little ahead of itself here and attempting to get ahead of this commission” by holding an “all-party meeting” Tuesday to discuss the schedule and scope of the CPUC proceedings. Although PG&E may recommend ways to proceed, “this commission sets the schedule and the scope of this proceeding,” he said.

October 10, 2016 – NBC Bay Area – Firefighters Clean Up Small Radioactive Spill That Prompted Evacuations in Antioch – Crews have successfully contained and cleaned up a small radioactive material spill that forced the evacuation of several apartments next to a construction site in Antioch Thursday morning, according to Contra Costa County fire officials. At about 9 a.m. crews responded to a report that a piece of equipment used by surveyors was run over by a construction vehicle and spilled out a very small amount of radioactive material, Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Fire Marshal Robert Marshall said. “There is zero contamination on the site at this point” and no one was injured or exposed to the material, Marshall said.
The material — cesium and americium — are common in medical and industrial uses and are found in certain types of smoke alarms, Marshall said.

October 10, 2016 – KVEW TV – Trump drummed about Yucca Mountain during stops in Nevada – Donald Trump told reporters in Nevada Wednesday that he has not taken a stance on whether nuclear waste from sites like Hanford should be stored at a Yucca Mountain repository. Trump was asked whether he was familiar with the ongoing debate over Yucca Mountain and responded, “I do.” He declined to take a position for or against storing waste there. Trump said he was sensitive to concerns about safety and the impact on the Las Vegas tourism industry, but once again refused to take a firm position on Yucca Mountain. Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton told the Las Vegas Sun that Yucca Mountain should be off the table because of questions about its suitability as a site and existing opposition to the idea.