And in other news… DIY atom-splitting

A Swedish man spent six months attempting to build a nuclear reactor — in his kitchen. Richard Handl wrote about his experiments on a blog, updating readers about incidents such as minor meltdowns on his stove. Authorities were only alerted months later when Handl began to question whether what he was doing might be illegal and he contacted the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority. They discovered radium, uranium and americium in his flat.

Handl, who is 31 and unemployed, said he was curious to “see if it’s possible to split atoms at home” because he had “always been interested in physics and chemistry”.

Police assured local residents the resulting radiation levels should be of no cause for concern. Handl had his own Geiger counter to monitor radiation levels, and told reporters “I had it under control; it was not so dangerous.” However, he later admitted that it was also “pretty stupid”.

Fiona Crosby

One Comment
  • OW
    1 October 2011 at 17:55
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    This is brilliant.

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