Articles on Radiation

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Don’t be confused: here’s the difference between radiation and radioactivity. Mob Mob

Explainer: the difference between radiation and radioactivity

On the weekend, a tank of radioactive material leaked from the closed Ranger uranium mine in the Northern Territory. While this has prompted concerns about the health of the surrounding Kakadu National…
You can try and control it, but radiation is everywhere. John Von Radowitz /PA

Explainer: How much radiation is harmful to health?

Radiation is everywhere. We catch it from the sun’s rays in the sky, and from the rocks beneath our feet. It comes from television sets, radios and mobile phones. We absorb it from certain fruits, vegetables…
Does the complexity of nuclear reactors mean they will never be safe? EPA/TEPCO

Is Fukushima the new normal for nuclear reactors?

Last week’s crisis at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan saw radioactive water leak again from the crippled facility, raising fears that groundwater flowing into the Pacific Ocean could be contaminated…
Few countries have pushed forward with nuclear power programmes after Fukushima. Tim Ireland/PA

Fukushima’s positive legacy

Just over two years after the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in eastern Japan in March 2011, public attitudes worldwide remain hardened against nuclear power. It may have fallen from the…
The Hadron Collider was built to find the Higgs Boson but it might also help us discover better ways to treat cancer. PA/CERN

Cutting-edge particle physics could bring cancer therapy home

The recent case of Neon Roberts and the legal dispute over his treatment for a brain tumour threw the spotlight on the potential risks of using radiotherapy to treat complex cancers in children. Radiotherapy…
Observations from NASA’s Van Allen Probes have revealed that a third radiation belt can sometimes appear above Earth. NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA discovers a new radiation belt around Earth

NASA revealed this morning (AEST) that its Van Allen Probes have discovered a third, previously unknown, radiation belt around Earth. The belt appears to be transient, depending strongly on solar activity…
This is bad, but it would be a lot worse without the ozone layer. garth.kennedy/Flickr

How does the ozone layer protect Earth from radiation?

SAVING THE OZONE: Part three in our series exploring on the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer – dubbed “the world’s most successful environmental agreement” – explains why we…
Smart meters worldwide use conventional cell phone networks to transmit their data. portland general

Smart meters are about as dangerous as …

Most fairly well educated people recognise pseudoscience as bunkum when they see it — astrology, young-earth creationism, alien abduction, pyramid power … Yet some of these same people are now being sucked…
Exposure to radiation from dental x-rays has decreased in recent years. EPA/Julian Abram Wainwright

Dental X-rays linked to brain tumour risk

People who received frequent dental x-rays as children could be at increased risk of developing a commonly diagnosed primary…
The true health costs of Fukushima’s radiation leaks won’t be known for decades. AAP

Don’t hold your breath for Fukushima’s radiation toll

A year can be a long time in politics. But for the radioactive particles released from Fukushima’s damaged nuclear reactor, a year is just a moment in their life of hundreds or thousands of years. So…
Iran is constructing nuclear power stations; that much is clear. AAP

Could Iran be building nuclear weapons? A scientific perspective

There is much concern that Iran is in the process of developing nuclear weapons. Such a development, we’re told, could induce Israel to launch a unilateral military strike with all types of unpredictable…

Radioactive material threatens farms in Japan

Soil from eastern Fukushima and some neighboring areas has levels of Cesium-137 above safe levels for human consumption…

Where is the earth’s heat coming from?

A study on the Earth’s radioactivity has found that uranium, thorium and potassium produce almost half of the Earth’s heat…

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