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Questions on super gamama rays

  1. May 10, 2008 #1
    A person being exposed to radiation (restricted to gamma) can have a time dependent effects. One can die in a year, months, or even days depending on the dose. Is it possible that gammas can kill a person almost instantly?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 10, 2008 #2

    Astronuc

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    Yes, it would be possible, but that would require an extraordinary burst of radiation (gamma or otherwise). Gamma's are highly penetrating photons which interact by Compton effect and if E> 1.022 MeV, by pair production. The ionizing effects of gammas and the secondary radiation (electrons) ionizes the molecules in the body.

    Here is one example of an acute radiation exposure.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louis_Slotin#The_criticality_accident

    I haven't reviewed this nor confirmed accuracy which should be done with a more reliable source.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiation_poisoning#Table_of_exposure_levels_and_symptoms

    http://www.wise-uranium.org/eftokc.html
     
  4. May 10, 2008 #3
    Thx for the result. I am a radiation worker myself so I know what are the effects. However, a while back Russia gave VN a type of radiolocical warfair weapon to stop China's advancing troops. It kills waves of people using radiation. I wouldn't think radiation would be that powerful.
     
  5. May 10, 2008 #4

    Vanadium 50

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    I find the claim that Russia gave the Vietnamese ray guns difficult to credit.

    The energy in absorbed radiation ultimately ends up as heat, and we know enough heat kills cells. So yes, it's possible to absorb enough radiation to die immediately. However, this is many orders of magnitude more than LD50, so anyone using these putative ray guns would be in danger of dying themselves from backscattered radiation.
     
  6. May 10, 2008 #5
     
  7. May 11, 2008 #6

    Vanadium 50

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    I still don't find the claim that Russians are passing out ray guns credible.

    Given that, it seems...um...premature to try and figure out how they work.
     
  8. May 11, 2008 #7
    Well, the source comes from a guy who in the battle himself. The weapon, by Geneva rule, can only be use for a country's self defense.
     
  9. May 12, 2008 #8

    Vanadium 50

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    The "Geneva rule"? You mean the Geneva Convention? Of 1949? Nothing about rayguns in that, I'm afraid. But in any event, this conversation has moved from the scientific, past the speculative and is rapidly approaching the silly.
     
  10. May 12, 2008 #9
    well, whatever rule that is. The world must come together at some point. I don't know what's your concern here. You do not believe such a weapon exist or you do not believe Russians give out such weapon. It doesn't matter, my question is already answer. Thx.
     
  11. May 12, 2008 #10
    who is this troll?
     
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