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Dispelling the myths about Red Mercury

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posted on Dec, 15 2004 @ 10:28 AM
A few friends online here at ATSN have asked me to post some iformation on this little known and highly suspicous it fact or fiction?
Here goes from what Ive found out.

Is red mercury real? Absolutely, but definitions vary. Without some Internet research, I would have given you the standard cinnabar/vermillion answer. However, the Russium tritium fusion bomb is more worrying.

Cinnabar is naturally-occurring mercuric sulfide (HgS), while vermillion is the name given to the red pigment derived from either natural or manufactured cinnabar.

Mercury (II) Iodide
The alpha crystalline form of mercury (II) iodide is called 'red mercury', which changes to the yellow beta form at 127°C.

A Ballotechnic Mercury Compound From Russia with Love
In the early 1990s, information coming out of Russia in articles and statements by high ranking military and civilian officials (including the Chairman of the Russian Atomic Energy Commission) indicated that a pure-fusion device as small as a baseball and weighing around 10 pounds could be developed. The amount of deuterium-tritium fuel needed on the order of a gram. This device was made possible by their use of an exotic new material capable of producing enormous pressures and temperatures – great enough to produce a mini pure-fusion explosive. In other words, no longer was a fission component needed to trigger the deuterium-tritium fusion.
This new material was dramatically different in nature and concept of use from the conventional high explosives used in fission weapons. When ignited, the new material did not actually explode but instead stayed intact long enough to produce the enormous temperatures and pressures sufficient to enable the deuterium-tritium fusion. The new material is known as a “ballotechnic” explosive, even though it does not actually explode in the conventional sense of the word. It was developed in Russia and became popularly known as “red mercury.” When President Boris Yeltsin took over the helm of the new Russia, in a secret directive he authorized the sale of red mercury on the international market. Sometimes the price was very high. Sometimes fake versions of it were offered to gullible buyers. The United States may have been one of these. Just after the Persian Gulf War, the head of the UN inspection Team sent into Iraq for the Agency for International Atomic Energy reported that in one Baghdad facility he found boxes full of offers to sell and develop red mercury. This discovery should have caused a huge furor. But, in the real world of nuclear politics it never even surfaced on any significant level. Apparently no one wanted to admit its existence or significance because of its implications respecting arms control and the NPT.
Past U.S. efforts to achieve a pure-fusion burn tried to mimic the fission-fusion approach. In it, the conditions needed to achieve a deuterium-tritium burn are achieved by imploding a conventional high explosive that would create the compression needed to initiate the burn. This is very hard to do using conventional explosives because of the precise control over the imploding shock wave that is needed. In the case of red mercury pure-fusion, it is the burn of the red mercury, not a shock wave, that creates the needed temperature and pressure. This obviates the very difficult timing and shock wave control required in a conventional approach.
As stories of black market red mercury trafficking began spreading, Western nations began a broad disinformation campaign to debunk the stories, ridiculing them and their authors. Leading this effort was the United States, via the Los Alamos nuclear weapons laboratory. They put out the word that red mercury was “one half-baked scam.”
That the red mercury fusion device is not a scam has been confirmed by responsible British investigators. One, Dr. Frank Barnaby, a veteran nuclear weapon designer, secretly interviewed knowledgeable Russian scientists. These scientists confirmed to him the existence of red mercury and its great significance.
The professed Los Alamos skepticism was hardly sincere in view of an intensive investigation of such explosives mounted at Los Alamos during the 1990s. The nature (and very high level of security classification) of the investigation belied claims of its being only a half-baked scam. The subject was so serious at Los Alamos that discussions of ballotechnics were held in their highly secure Aztec SCIF (Special Compartmented Intelligence Facility).
On the open field of battle these pure-fusion neutron bombs, can be delivered by small rockets, mortars, artillery, etc. without any concern for the high accuracies demanded by conventional warhead use because the associated physical collateral damage was so low and lethal radiation effects radius so large. They do not need to hit the center of the target to devastate conventionally armed ground forces.
Because urban structures in general produce no serious attenuation of the high-energy neutrons, buildings are not an effective place to hide. The neutrons will find the soldiers while leaving the buildings and infrastructure intact.
In the air battle, fusion warhead effects would reach out much further than at ground level. In that case, anti-aircraft weapons could be vastly more effective than the currently used conventional systems. With a pure-fusion warhead, the tables are quickly turned. The lethal neutron effects of air burst pure-fusion warheads can reach out many hundreds of yards, thus rendering the air defense countermeasures practically worthless.
Considering a terrorists potential interest, the horror of such devices is self evident. The use of these devices by suicide bombers presents a far more threatening situation than possible repetitions of the 9-11 attacks. Because of their very small size and weight, they readily could be moved into and around the United States with practically no chance of detection.
According to some reports, red mercury is a cherry red semi-liquid which is produced by irradiating elemental mercury with mercury antimony oxide in a Russian nuclear reactor. Pure fusion devices don't require fissionable material, so it's easier to get the materials needed to make one and easier to transport said materials from one place to another. Other reports refer to a documentary in which it was possible to read a report on Hg2Sb207, in which the compound had a density of 20.20 Kg/dm3 (!). Personally, I find it plausible that mercury antimony oxide, as a low density (nonradioactive?) powder, may be of interest as a ballotechnic material. The high-density material seems unlikely. It would also seem unreasonably dangerous (to the maker) to use a ballotechnic material in a fusion device. One intriguing source mentions a liquid explosive, HgSbO, made by Du Pont laboratories and listed in the international chemical register as number 20720-76-7.

posted on Sep, 6 2008 @ 03:05 PM
Another find was a bottle of Red Mercury. Now this was a big deal for me. In order for a nuclear bomb to created fusion, you need fission, which is why nuclear missles are so complex. Back in the peak of the Cold War, the USSR came out with a story that stated they developed a chemical that could create fusion WITHOUT fission, thus creating the capabilites for the possibility of a small, cheap nuclear mega-ton bomb. It was called Red Mercury. Most people say it was just some urban legend that was whipped up by the Soviets to sell some crap on the black market for $200K-$300K per ounce (which they did). No tests have ever proved that this substance actually worked. It was produced on the USSR and Eat Germany, from what I know. It just goes to show what extent Iraq was taking to create something for mass destruction.

posted on Jun, 5 2015 @ 09:33 AM
a reply to: fmcanarney

How about if this myth you wrote about is true? if you want to see a life picture of such an item experimented and already working.

Contact thru my registered email, if you are interesting to explore this contribution.

Many regards

posted on Jun, 5 2015 @ 10:29 AM
The whole 'red mercury' thing is bogus. A tale.

That said, the code word for Li6D at Los Alamos was, for a bit, "red mercury", in the 50s.

It's likely that's where all the tales originate.

eta: it's also possible that two legends mated to form the current 'red mercury'/ballotechnic tale. One the Li6D name, another a nuclear isomeric explosive.
edit on 5-6-2015 by Bedlam because: (no reason given)

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