This is the closest color on the Blogspot palette I can find to Cherenkov Radiation -- the blue glow caused by particles travelling faster than the speed of light for the medium (most commonly water) the particle is travelling through.
RECEIVED: 14 May 2009
SUBJECT: [Basement_Garage_Ionizing_Radiation_Enthusiasts] DU metal on ePay. Unbelievable.
Depleted Uranium metal plate of 38.3 grams, Item number: 320369743047
no connection to seller.
Depleted uranium (DU) is uranium primarily composed of the isotope uranium-238 (U-238). Natural uranium is about 99.27 percent U-238, 0.72 percent U-235, and 0.0055 percent U-234. U-235 is used for fission in nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons. Uranium is enriched in U-235 by separating the isotopes by mass. The byproduct of enrichment, called depleted uranium or DU, contains less than one third as much U-235 and U-234 as natural uranium. The external radiation dose from DU is about 60 percent of that from the same mass of natural uranium. DU is also found in reprocessed spent nuclear reactor fuel, but that kind can be distinguished from DU produced as a byproduct of uranium enrichment by the presence of U-236. In the past, DU has been called Q-metal, depletalloy, and D-38, but those names are no longer used.
DU is useful because of its very high density of 19.1 g/cm3. Civilian uses include counterweights in aircraft, radiation shielding in medical radiation therapy and industrial radiography equipment, and containers used to transport radioactive materials. Military uses include defensive armor plating and armor-piercing projectiles.
The use of DU in munitions is controversial because of numerous questions about potential long-term health effects. Normal functioning of the kidney, brain, liver, heart, and numerous other systems can be affected by uranium exposure, because in addition to being weakly radioactive, uranium is a toxic metal. DU is less toxic than other heavy metals such as arsenic and mercury. It is weakly radioactive and remains so because of its long half-life. The aerosol produced during impact and combustion of depleted uranium munitions can potentially contaminate wide areas around the impact sites or can be inhaled by civilians and military personnel. In a three week period of conflict in Iraq during 2003 it was estimated over 1000 tons of depleted uranium munitions were used mostly in cities. The U.S. Department of Defense claims that no human cancer of any type has been seen as a result of exposure to either natural or depleted uranium. Yet, U.S. D.o.D. studies using cultured cells and laboratory rodents continue to suggest the possibility of leukemogenic, genetic, reproductive, and neurological effects from chronic exposure. In addition, the UK Pensions Appeal Tribunal Service in early 2004 attributed birth defect claims from a February 1991 Gulf War combat veteran to depleted uranium poisoning. Also, a 2005 epidemiology review concluded: "In aggregate the human epidemiological evidence is consistent with increased risk of birth defects in offspring of persons exposed to DU."