Earth's atmosphere suffers from 'nuclear hangover'

A study has found that radioactive particals from Cold War-era nuclear tests persist in the earth's atmosphere.

Earth's atmosphere suffers from 'nuclear hangover'

World Bulletin / News Desk

Scientists have found that radioactive debris caused by nuclear bomb tests during the Cold War still exist in the earth’s atmosphere.

Despite the common belief that caesium isotopes would have all but disappeared by now, a study published in the Nature Communications journal suggests otherwise.

The main author of the study, Dr Jose Corcho Alvarado from the Institute of Radiation Physics at Lausanne University Hospital in Switzerland, told the BBC: "Most of the radioactive particles are removed in the first few years after the explosion, but a fraction remains in the stratosphere for a few decades or even hundreds or thousands of years."

Although he claimed that human life was not in any immediate danger, scientists believe that radioactive isotopes that cannot be washed out by rain may be trapped in the earth’s stratosphere, noting that there was up to 1,500 more times the concentration in this part of the atmosphere than in lower levels.

Last Mod: 08 Ocak 2014, 16:36
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