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Fungi lock depleted uranium out of harm's way

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posted on May, 6 2008 @ 02:29 AM
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Fungi lock depleted uranium out of harm's way


envi ronment.newscientist.com

Now, a research team in Scotland has established that common fungi can grow on and chemically lock away the offending uranium. As their hyphal filaments sprawled across fragments of depleted uranium, the tubules gradually became coated in a yellowy mineral.

This, it turned out, locked the uranium into a chemical form inaccessible to biological organisms, and unlikely to dissolve into surface waters.

At twice the density of lead, depleted uranium is added to weapons to give them extra force to penetrate targets. But the complete fallout from exploding missiles is impossible to collect physically. This means that hazardous radioactive uranium-235 in the material, which can cause kidney toxicity and has been linked with nerve damage and lung cancer, can persist in the environment for decades.

(visit the link for the full news article)


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U.N. Passes Depleted Uranium Resolution in Landslide Vote




posted on May, 6 2008 @ 02:29 AM
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Essentially, the fungi form uranyl phosphate minerals which stabilise the uranium. "They change its chemistry from being highly chemically unstable and reactive metallic uranium to one of the most chemically stable forms, thus preventing uranium migration through the food chain. Sounds like a good thing to me! Hope it doesn't have other unexpected side effects!

envi ronment.newscientist.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



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