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10,000 Plutonium "Canisters?"

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posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 12:59 PM
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Pantex, a nuclear weapons facility in Texas has "repacked" 10,000 "pits' of plutonium as of July 04. Just gotta read this. What does this mean?


www.pantex.com...




posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 01:39 PM
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It means many weapons could be reloaded and or refurbished quickly should the demand arise, unless somebody drops a big bomb there first

[edit on 13-12-2004 by Countermeasures]



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 01:46 PM
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They're storing the radioactive materials until they can be disposed of properly someplace else. The repacking is a safetly emasure to prevent materials from leaking into the ground.



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 02:29 PM
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Originally posted by cmdrkeenkid
They're storing the radioactive materials until they can be disposed of properly someplace else. The repacking is a safetly emasure to prevent materials from leaking into the ground.


hopefully the powers that be will be smart and 'dispose' of the plutonium by burning it in a reactor, instead of burring it.. there is probably gigawatt CENTURIES worth of power there..



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 02:37 PM
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Unfortunately, reproccessing and using the Pu for power generation would inevitably generate twice as much low level and spent fuel waste that would then have to be stored and disposed in the same manner.



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 02:41 PM
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Originally posted by HowardRoark
Unfortunately, reproccessing and using the Pu for power generation would inevitably generate twice as much low level and spent fuel waste that would then have to be stored and disposed in the same manner.


But what about breeder reactors? Waste is minimal. There is new technology that converts decay directly into electron-volts. NO WASTE.



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 04:23 PM
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Originally posted by HowardRoark
Unfortunately, reproccessing and using the Pu for power generation would inevitably generate twice as much low level and spent fuel waste that would then have to be stored and disposed in the same manner.


who cares about low level waste? thats easy to deal with.

the plutonium doenst HAVE ot produce any high level waste either. spent fuel still contains an enourmous amount of energy that can be recovered in a spallation reactor - the end result will be EXTREEMLY hot waste - but fortunatly since halflife is inversly proportional to specific activity, the waste will be a hazard for a comparitivly short period of time, making it much easier to deal with.

disposing of the plutonium is like buying oil from the saudis, and burrying it int he ground because it's politically incorrect to use oil that comes from the nation that most of the 9-11 hijackers came from. it's plain old stupid. the antinuke tree huggers shouold be burried in yucca mountain and this nation should start building large numbers of nuke power plants



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 04:32 PM
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You also have to deal with mixed wastes (usually corrrosive liquids), TRU contaminated materials, Ultimate decomissioning of the reactors, and yes you can use them in breeders, but guess what, breeders "bred" more fuel then put in. Do you realy want some tinpot dictator in a third world hell hole to have a source of Pu?



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 04:38 PM
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Originally posted by HowardRoark
You also have to deal with mixed wastes (usually corrrosive liquids), TRU contaminated materials, Ultimate decomissioning of the reactors, and yes you can use them in breeders, but guess what, breeders "bred" more fuel then put in. Do you realy want some tinpot dictator in a third world hell hole to have a source of Pu?


who is tlaking about tinpot dictators in third world countries? i thought we were tlaking about good old fashioned made in the us of a plutonium...

who cares about corrosive liquids and decontamination of reactors? unless you want to build an array of solar cells 100 miles on a side and use up all of the worlds lead for the next century buikding storage batteries to keep the lights on during the night, we simply have to get our power from somewhere. fossil fuels will NOT last forever and they do loads of damage to the environment every single second they operate. a nuke plant doesnt damage the environment at all if it's built and operated properly.



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 08:59 PM
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Well the problem of proliferation is one of the primary reasons that the U.S. has stiffled fuel recycling research.

Since the U.S. is one of the few countries capable of conducting that research, it has worked so far.



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 09:08 PM
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Im all for using this stuff for energy as long as the by product is not hazardous. The benifits are obvious. When we finally run out of what we have stored above gropund, we can dig up the buried stuff and use that as well. Gets rid of all of it, and gives basically free energy while it last. In the mean time, we could start researching more alternative energy resources so when the PU runs out, we are prepaired.



posted on Dec, 13 2004 @ 09:30 PM
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Originally posted by HowardRoark
Unfortunately, reproccessing and using the Pu for power generation would inevitably generate twice as much low level and spent fuel waste that would then have to be stored and disposed in the same manner.


I thought that processed plutonium results in waste with a much shorter half life? But the US doesn't process spent nuke fuel anyway no? They don't want to have that much weapons material being shuffled about and worked on for security purposes no?

Also, the paper says that these are nuke materials taken out of weapons, they ar saying that they are packaging them for long term storage. Obviously not final storage, but perhaps the fact that Yucca keeps getting delayed has necessitated this new storage?



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 01:21 AM
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Originally posted by HowardRoark
Well the problem of proliferation is one of the primary reasons that the U.S. has stiffled fuel recycling research.

Since the U.S. is one of the few countries capable of conducting that research, it has worked so far.


i dont buy it. proliferation is just an excuse the eco nuts use to support the argument for not doing it. something like 300 tons of plutonium have been produced by the governments of the world for nuclear weapons use - there ahsnt been any prolifieration problems int he last half a century with any of this material that we know of. civilain nuclear reactors ahve produces over a 1000 tonns of plutoinum (either intentionally, ie in a breeder, or not) - something like 200 tonns of this material has been reprocessed and has been used or is ready for use back in the commerical nuclear power plant fuel stream. again no major proliferation problems have cropped up...

just because we start using the valuble assets that certain special intrests want to throw away does NOT mean plutonium will be avalible on every street corner. if people are so worried about proliferation, have a government shop do the reprocessing. have teams of special forces guys escort fresh fuel loads to nuke plants during fueling operations. ect.

why pay billions of $ to store the stuff - pay billions of $ more to mine new uranium out of the ground, damaging the environment further because mining is never something thats a 'green' process - and maybe have to pay billions of $ int he future to dig the plutonium out of the ground when we decide to use it as fuel.


it just makes no sense.



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 03:32 AM
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the UK and france are the world leaders in re porcessing - the uk reproccess alot of the USA waste.

And `dig up` plutonium? other than refining Muromontite how are you going to do it?



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 04:29 AM
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Did anyone else find the 10,000 figure more than a lil worrying. By definition these "Pits" are components of nuclear weapons.......so are they talking about parts from 10,000 different nukes? I had no idea any country but Russia may have this number of nuclear weapons.....and if this is going on in just one power plant and area.....for me it leads me to question just how many nuclear devices the US really has?



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 06:21 AM
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Originally posted by radiant_obsidian
Did anyone else find the 10,000 figure more than a lil worrying. By definition these "Pits" are components of nuclear weapons.......so are they talking about parts from 10,000 different nukes? I had no idea any country but Russia may have this number of nuclear weapons.....and if this is going on in just one power plant and area.....for me it leads me to question just how many nuclear devices the US really has?


That figure of 10,000 pits was as of 6 months ago. The article infers that many more units were to be processed. I am wondering if North texas is about to "Glow" in the dark. Oak Ridge National labs is also processing similar devices although no quantities are listed. Again this does not count "active" devices.



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 06:34 AM
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Oh thanks DrHoracid....now my lil fear is gonna give me full scale nightmares


seriously though, i wonder what would happen to all these radioactive dumps and containers if (big IF) they were smashed up during something like and earthquake or a volcanic eruption? Would these types of materials be radioactive enough and of high enough toxicity to be a danger to public health in a large area radii??



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 07:03 AM
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Originally posted by radiant_obsidian
Oh thanks DrHoracid....now my lil fear is gonna give me full scale nightmares


seriously though, i wonder what would happen to all these radioactive dumps and containers if (big IF) they were smashed up during something like and earthquake or a volcanic eruption? Would these types of materials be radioactive enough and of high enough toxicity to be a danger to public health in a large area radii??


A majority of the if not all containers have Plutonium. A few years ago the russians stored similar containers too close together and wipped out an entire city. In fact the Russians took the city off their maps to hide the accident.



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 10:15 AM
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Originally posted by radiant_obsidian
seriously though, i wonder what would happen to all these radioactive dumps and containers if (big IF) they were smashed up during something like and earthquake or a volcanic eruption? Would these types of materials be radioactive enough and of high enough toxicity to be a danger to public health in a large area radii??


Actually, these containers are built to withstand A LOT. I've seen pictures of the tests of them. There's one from when they tested it getting into an accident while on the back of a flatbed semi. They ran the semi into a wall, at a very high velocity. The semi crumpled until the point where you only knew it was a semi because the caption while the container didn't have a scratch.



posted on Dec, 14 2004 @ 11:46 AM
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Originally posted by radiant_obsidian
Did anyone else find the 10,000 figure more than a lil worrying. By definition these "Pits" are components of nuclear weapons.......so are they talking about parts from 10,000 different nukes? I had no idea any country but Russia may have this number of nuclear weapons.....and if this is going on in just one power plant and area.....for me it leads me to question just how many nuclear devices the US really has?


this is not going on at a power plant, this is going on at the deparmtnet of energy's central and only facility for doing this sort of work (they may dissasemble nukes at other places in the us, but not on a 'production' sort of basis). their work represents all of the us nuclear weaposn that have been dissasembled without having their fissile material reused - alot of them to comply with treaty obligations.

at the peak of the cold war the us and ussr had something like a total of 70,000 nukes between the two countries - pretty much evenly split down the middle. Today that number is somewhere around 10,000 for each side iirc, and ultimate treaty goals are to bring the number down to maybe 3,000 or so...


Originally posted by Harlequin

And `dig up` plutonium? other than refining Muromontite how are you going to do it?


someone had previously possibly implied that plutonium should be disposed of, not burned in reactors, the digging up I reffered to was asusming that plutonium had to be dug up form yucca mountain or a similar facility because we decided to burry it but then went back to recover the energy sitting there once fossil fules run out and we have to rely more heavily on nuke power.



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