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U.S. boosts radiation-sniffing system

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posted on Mar, 17 2011 @ 01:18 AM

Federal agencies are beefing up their radiation-monitoring capabilities at home and abroad, even as they insist that significant amounts of fallout won’t waft from Japan onto U.S. territory.

At home, the Environmental Protection Agency said it's adding seven monitors in Alaska, Hawaii and Guam to its RadNet radiation-tracking system, which operates about 100 air-sniffing stations nationwide. Putting in those extra stations "allows us to gather data from a position closer to Japan," EPA said in an online question-and-answer guide.

Looking beyond America's borders, the U.S. Air Force is sending out a high-tech aircraft to sniff the air over Japan for radiation. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration are also sending experts to Japan to help counter the growing crisis at Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant complex.

Source - MSNBC

It is a very interesting article which includes a statement by US officials that the Japanese government is downplaying the situation - and advises that all Americans get to a distance at least 50 miles (80 kilometers) away from the Fukushima reactors as compared to the 12 miles recommended by Japanese officials.

It also suggests that the Government is taking North American exposure risks seriously. More seriously than we are being led to believe.

Thoughts on this denizens of ATS?


posted on Mar, 17 2011 @ 01:24 AM
reply to post by Hefficide

It will be much easier to monger the fear if they can show that there is radiation out there.
Some folks don't realize how much there actually is out there.

posted on Mar, 17 2011 @ 01:38 AM
reply to post by Hefficide


Found this little part to be of great interest.

The radioactive plume from Fukushima's reactors can't be detected by satellites in orbit, but it can be tracked by the U.S. Air Force's Constant Phoenix WC-135 jets, which are designed to monitor airborne fallout from nuclear weapons tests. Constant Phoenix came into play after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster in Ukraine to sample the air over the Air Force spokesman, Maj. Chad Steffey ... confirmed that a Constant Phoenix WC-135 would be sent to sample the air wafting from Japan, in response to a Japanese government request. The planes would be brought from Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. Steffey said he didn't yet have details about the timing of the operation.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a senior U.S. defense official told NBC News that Constant Phoenix's involvement was "absolutely" a significant event. "We are using it to help out a nation," the official said. "It's significant." .

That is a very significant mention in this news release

posted on Mar, 17 2011 @ 02:35 AM
reply to post by g146541

I hadn't considered that yet. My own predisposed notions have me locked into thinking about downplaying radiation risks. But there is an argument to be made, also, for motive to overstate the dangers.

Stars for you!

posted on Mar, 17 2011 @ 03:36 AM
Thought it might help to link some specifics about Constant Phoenix.

The WC-135W Constant Phoenix atmospheric collection aircraft supports national level consumers by collecting particulate and gaseous effluents and debris from accessible regions of the atmosphere in support of the Limited Nuclear Test Ban Treaty of 1963.

The aircraft is a modified C-135B or EC-135C platform. The Constant Phoenix's modifications are primarily related to its on-board atmospheric collection suite, which allows the mission crew to detect radioactive "clouds" in real time. The aircraft is equipped with external flow-through devices to collect particulates on filter paper and a compressor system for whole air samples collected in holding spheres.

The cockpit crew is from the 45th Reconnaissance Squadron at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., and special equipment operators are assigned to Det. 1, Air Force Technical Applications Center at Offutt AFB.

And an update from the OP souce:

Update for 1:50 a.m. ET March 17: The New York Times reports that the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization, a U.N. agency based in Vienna, has drawn up a simulation showing the progress of Fukushima's radioactive plume across the Pacific. Assuming that the plume began to rise on Saturday, and assuming that the radiation levels were detectable, the readings might be picked up in Alaska's Aleutian Islands today (Thursday) and in Southern California late Friday, the Times reported.


The most current radiation spread prediction map:

It appears to me that there is no doubt North America is to be effected.


edit on 3/17/11 by Hefficide because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 17 2011 @ 08:21 AM
Bedtime bump for the day walkers.

posted on Mar, 17 2011 @ 10:19 AM
reply to post by Hefficide

The government says.. "No worries. Nothing significant here in the US. Oh by the way, the Japanese are making light of the situation, but no worries, really"

But their actions speak louder than any words could.

S & F

posted on Mar, 18 2011 @ 01:37 AM

U.S. military detects more radiation

U.S. officials have told NBC News that they're seeing a disparity between Japanese radiation readings and the readings they've been getting from military monitors.

Since then, the data on radiation releases suggest a range of outcomes, going all the way up to "dire," the officials said. They spoke with NBC on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the findings publicly.

Intelligence experts also tell NBC News that the United States has a network of ground-level stations around the world that monitor radiation and can backtrack to calculate how much has been dispersed from a specific site.

Source - Again MSNBC

It appears that NBC has been chosen to carry this story - as other services seem to be ignoring it.

The article says that we have Global Hawk drones and U2 spyplanes also monitoring.

Very interesting stuff indeed... I am a bit shocked that ATS is not following this more closely - our own government using the word "dire" regarding the radiation issues.

edit on 3/18/11 by Hefficide because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 18 2011 @ 02:16 AM

Originally posted by Hefficide

U.S. officials have told NBC News...

That is so ironic, Heff- had to point out that NBC is milspeak for:

Nuclear-Biological-Chemical defense

edit on 18-3-2011 by Chakotay because: CLASSIFIED

posted on Mar, 18 2011 @ 02:55 AM
Some more updates:

Experts watch radiation levels, try to calm fears

BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) -- Officials are trying to calm nerves in California by reassuring everyone there is no serious threat of radiation from Japan after reports from some scientists that radiation particles in the jet stream will reach Los Angeles by Friday. The federal government has moved more monitoring stations to the west coast to help in that effort.

Scientists will know the air is from Japan if they find traces of radioactive isotopes like Cesium 137, which caused serious health damage after Chernobyl. Many experts say what is happening in Japan is nowhere near that level of disaster.

Well... today is Friday. It is even Friday, now, on the west coast. As I write this, it is approximately 44 minutes into Friday in the great state of California (My familial home on the paternal side - and my former home).

And a bit about Caesium 137:

Caesium-137 is water-soluble and chemically toxic in small amounts. The biological behavior of caesium-137 is similar to that of potassium and rubidium. After entering the body, caesium gets more or less uniformly distributed through the body, with higher concentration in muscle tissues and lower in bones. The biological half-life of caesium is rather short at about 70 days. Experiments with dogs showed that a single dose of 3800 μCi/kg (approx. 44 μg/kg of caesium-137) is lethal within three weeks.

And very importantly:

Accidental ingestion of caesium-137 can be treated with the chemical Prussian blue, which binds to it chemically and then speeds its expulsion from the body.

Prussian blue is an artists dye...

Prussian blue is a dark blue pigment with the idealized formula Fe7(CN)18⋅14H2O. Another name for the color Prussian blue is Berlin blue or, in painting, Parisian blue. Turnbull's blue is the same substance but is made from different reagents.
Prussian blue is one of the first synthetic pigments. It is famously complex, owing to the presence of variable amounts of other ions and the sensitive dependence of its appearance on the size of the particles. The pigment is used in paints, and it is the traditional "blue" in blueprints. It has been used as an antidote for certain kinds of heavy metal poisoning.
Prussian blue lent its name to prussic acid, which was derived from it, and to ferrocyanide (originally meaning "blue compound of iron", from Latin ferrum and Greek κυανεος). As ferrocyanide is made of iron and CN radicals, reinterpreting the component "-cyanide" in the compound word produced the word "cyanide" for compounds containing the CN radical.

So, while everyone is making a bee-line for health food stores and pharmacies... Well...

The main news article I began with ends with the following:

Speaking at UC Berkeley Thursday, Benjamin tried to calm fears.

"There's no reason to be afraid right now because the harmful levels are not heading in our direction," Benjamin said.

Scientists in Berkeley will get the first results Thursday evening, but they are not expected to say much. The real results will come Friday or the following day, when and if those particles from Japan may hit the West Coast

While I do not personally lend myself to hyperbole - I am also a former Boy Scout who believes strongly in being prepared. So, having said that, I might advice that ATSers on the west coast take up "painting" quite rapidly. Not only is it a fun hobby... It might empower you to save your own life.

ABC news source link - KGO TV San Francisco
Caesium 137 Wiki
Prussian Blue Wiki


edit on 3/18/11 by Hefficide because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 18 2011 @ 04:17 AM

Originally posted by Hefficide
It also suggests that the Government is taking North American exposure risks seriously. More seriously than we are being led to believe.

Thoughts on this denizens of ATS?

1) I know just from the lies and coverup that it's a much more serious situation than we're being led to believe.

2) The U.S. government can sniff all the radiation they want, but I won't believe ANYTHING they say. The only radiation monitoring I'll trust is that done by other citizens, like this one.

posted on Mar, 18 2011 @ 05:17 AM
reply to post by GoldenFleece

That is a very good point. Trusting Uncle Sam can lead to very bad results.

As a community, IMO, we need to pool resources and find some accurate information about caesium levels. My thought, to avoid hyperbolic "wannabe's" from polluting the information stream is to see if California Universities track these numbers in house. Academic sources can be quite valuable and accurate and would avoid opportunism and lack of expertise issues.

posted on Mar, 18 2011 @ 09:24 AM
Bumping to get info to the daywalkers.

posted on Mar, 18 2011 @ 12:12 PM
reply to post by Hefficide

Any idea what the dosage of prussian blue should be, if one is exposed cesium 137? Luckily, I paint

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