Radioactive Emissions from a Nuclear meltdown


Various radioactive substances that can be emitted because of a nuclear meltdown , their properties and side effects
  • Radioactive ntirogen(N 16)
·  Nitrogen 16 is formed when fast nuetrons from reactor core hit oxygen molecules in coolant water
·  Hence even under normal circumstances radioactive nitrogen in small quantities is released
·  However it has a short half life of 7 secs
  • Tritium
·  Radioactive form of H
·  Known as heavy hydrogen
·  Half life: 12 years
·  Weak form of radiation, cant penetrate skin
  • Iodine
·  Iodine 131 isgenerated in active core of nuclear reactor
·  Acctive core is where splitting of atoms takes place which results in producing Lots of energy and Highly radioactive radiations
·  When there is a meltdown it is emitted out else under normal circumstances it remains within reactor
·  It can accumulate in thyroid glands which are endocrine glands that produce hormones to regulate growth
·  This can lead to cancer
·  Potassium iodide pills intake can help in saturating the thyroid glands and hence reduce the intake of radioactive iodine by thyroid glands
  • Cesium -137
·  Half life of 30 years
·  Very dangerous
·  Takes more than 200 years to decay
·  Still a problem in 1986 chernobyl
·  Mixes easily with water and simialr to potassium
·  Accumulates in muscles and bones
·  Increased risk of cancer
·  High exposure can cause burns and even death


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