1. FalloutMarine
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    FalloutMarine New Member

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    Nuke Effects and capabilities in 2071

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by FalloutMarine, Dec 3, 2013.

    I need to know or at least have some speculation for a book on how long nuclear radiation and fallout would last from a nuke. how long would you have to stay in a shelter? by the way they launch the nuke in 2071 so what would be the nuclear capabilities?
     
  2. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    Have you tried Googling "nuclear fallout", "radioactivity" or "half life"? The key independent variables are the materials used in the nukes a the amounts thereof.
     
  3. FalloutMarine
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    FalloutMarine New Member

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    yes and it doesn't really give a good grasp for the future nuclear capability in a futuristic setting but it gave me an idea of how bad it would be but that is all
     
  4. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    Fallout and radiation from a nuclear explosion would work the same regardless of the time it was unleashed. I'm sure you'll have to stay in a Fallout shelter at least two weeks to get over the initial settling of nuclear radiation from any atomic blash, but if you are thinking of some kind of sustained nuclear attack then with the apparent Nuclear Winter ... might be an idea to hide in that bunker a little longer. At least, I hope memory serves me well there.

    As for the nuclear capability of a country some 50 years from now it's hard to say, but I'd imagine most nations would at least be able to harness the power of nuclear energy in some way. They'll likely not be much more destructive than current bombs, the US and USSR kind of got to a point where they could make bombs so big they'd be simply impractical to use.
     
  5. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    That's why I mentioned size and type as the major variables affecting the intensity and duration of fallout. I don't think anyone can predict 60 years into the future, but you might want to consider the fact that the two most prolific nuclear powers in history have been to varying degrees reducing their nuclear arsenals for three decades. My suggestion was to allow the OP to construct his own scenario based on which isotopes his theoretical powers were to use and how many of them.
     
  6. FalloutMarine
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    FalloutMarine New Member

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    would it be possible that the nukes caused a nuclear power plant to explode causing high radiation levels i cant say they sat there for a week or two for the story's sake
     
  7. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    No - I highly doubt it. Nuclear power plants are designed to highly limit the number of potential accidents. If any radiation comes out of a power plant that's been hit by a bomb I think it's likely going to be pretty minimal.
     
  8. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Nuclear power plants won't explode (unless they are also clandestinely enriching fissionables to weapons grade - even than very unlikely). However, as the recent tsunamis in Japan have shown, the damaged plants can contaminate a wide area around the site to a dangerous level.

    Incidentally, exposure to radiation won't make you radioactive. But absorbing radioactive materials will. It could be contaminated dust, or it could be radioactive elements dissolved in groundwater, or in the form of inhaled gases, or incorporated into food plants or animals. What is usually referred to as fallout is largely airborne dust and smoke particles, which settles on exposed surfaces.
     
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  9. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    Technically there is no upward limit to the power of a hydrogen bomb, for reasons that are still classified.

    In fact Michio Kaku uses the science to propose a working Deathstar laser, so if you wanted to annihilate a continent or two and knock the earth off it's orbit, it's completely possible. Though the bomb would have to be the size of Butte Montana.
     
  10. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Classified? The sky is full of examples. We call the nearest one Sol.
     
  11. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    2071 is right around the corner as regards development of nuclear armament. It's tomorrow. It's ten minutes from now. That technological venue is not now getting input like telecommunication technology or personal and portable computing. Nuclear warheads detonated in 2071 would likely be ones that exist right now, today, this minute, in real life, as we speak. The 'arms race' has moved toward precision technology with intended effect only where you want it.
     
  12. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    Sorry I wanted to include the fact that the actual figures behind the hydrogen bomb are classified by every government that's ever made one.
     
  13. live2write
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    live2write Contributing Member

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    Research Chernobyl. A ton of resources there! One of the greatest nuclear meltdowns and we have evidence of before and after.

    Also if you want information on the half life of nuclear material, look up radioactive waist and what the bi-product of nuclear powered energy creates. Creepy stuff. You can also find some information about the Yucca Mountains in Nevada for chemical waste. It should give you information on the intrusions of their mission statement on storing highly radioactive nuclear waste and the lifespan of the radio activity.

    Lol funny thing I just watched a documentary about Nuclear Power and warfare.


    Seriously, do you realize when a reactor pool does not have enough coolant, the rods get hot enough to melt themselves and just one spark for flame and boom! The power that emits when a neutron hits a radioactive atom is so great that it melts itself.

    Chernobyl, not enough coolant for the radioactive rods to keep to stable temperatures. The Granite walls that surrounded the chamber exploded! If you were to take a nuclear bomb and strike a nuclear power plant...chain reaction. Also radioactive material will remain hot from hours to days to sometimes years depending on the type of material.
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2013
  14. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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  15. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    A meltdown is not an explosion. And while it's true that a reactro can explode due to steam expansion or possibly even chemical explosion, it won't result in a thermonuclear explosion.

    Also, it's a huge exaggeration to say that a single neutron striking a single radioactive atom would cause the rod to melt. And a nuclear bomb detonated in a nuclear power plant is analogous to exploding a crate of dynamite with a carton of firecrackers on top. There's an increase in the existing explosion, but it's practically negligible.
     
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  16. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    This really annoyed me about Pacific Rim. There's a huge difference between the strong and weak nuclear forces.
     
  17. Edward M. Grant
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    Edward M. Grant Contributing Member

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    Typical nuclear fallout follows the 7/10s rule; radiation drops by a factor of ten for every increase in time by a factor of 7. So after 7 hours it's 1/10 of the radiation at 1 hour, after two days it's 1/100, after 2 weeks it's 1/1000, after 14 weeks it's 1/10000, etc. This is the source of the usual 'stay in a shelter for two weeks' rule; beyond that, you're into rapidly diminishing returns. After about 25 years, you'd likely be down around current background levels again.

    However, if you drop a nuclear bomb on a nuclear reactor, it throws all the reactor byproducts into the fallout cloud too. Those typically have a much longer half-life than bomb byproducts, which means they're less radioactive, but the fallout decays much slower. I forget the precise numbers, but after a few months the reactor byproducts would likely be the main source of radiation remaining from the fallout, and they slowly decline over centuries, if not longer.
     
  18. Edward M. Grant
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    Edward M. Grant Contributing Member

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    BTW, this is generally considered the definitive work on nuclear weapon effects:

    'The Effects of Nuclear Weapons' by Glasston and Dolan:

    http://www.fourmilab.ch/etexts/www/effects/

    I thought it included estimates of fallout levels from a bomb on a reactor, but I can't see them in chapter 9.
     

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