Toxicity of plutonium and some other actinides

Edsall, John T.
September 1976
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists;Sep1976, Vol. 32 Issue 7, p26
The author talks about the hazards involving the toxicity of plutonium and other actinides and the risk that plutonium from nuclear reactors can be made into nuclear weapons. There has been a wide disagreement as to how great a risk plutonium does present if produced and used on a large scale in nuclear reactors and processed in the various steps of the nuclear fuel cycle. The problem of plutonium is significant if the high-levels of wastes from the reactors are reworked so as to extract the plutonium. There also lies the problem of the ultimate disposal of high-level and low-level wastes particularly the handling of substantial amounts of plutonium.


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