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Autoradiograph from Pu-239

  1. Aug 14, 2012 #1
    I am officially stumped. I am studying the exposure to personnel from Operation Crossroads (Able and Baker bombs). One of the things I have run across is a claim that Col. Warren Stafford proved there was plutonium in the lagoon because a surgeon fish had autoradiographed a film it was laid on after eating contaminated lagoon algae (the claim is actually from the official photo archive). This was about 9 days after the Baker burst.

    What I'm trying to figure out is 1) how you definitively identify Pu-239 from an autoradiograph in an environment where Pu-239, U-235, fission products from both, and activated materials from the environment are all present and 2) how alpha radiation exposes film (the claim also stated that Alpha radiation was responsible for image).

    Am I missing something?

    Thanks
     
  2. jcsd
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