Apollo 13's RTGs: Houston, Do We Really Have A Problem?

Will NASA Ever Recover Apollo 13s Plutonium From the Sea?, Txchnologist

"I don't think that anyone has seriously considered that," said Leonard Dudzinski, a NASA program executive who deals with radioisotope power systems. The plutonium was in an oxide form contained in fuel capsule, which itself was inside a graphite and ceramic fuel cask. "The cladding would not be compromised over time by the seawater," Dudzinski said. The current expectation is that the cladding will survive for 10 half lives of the Plutonium, close to 870 years. If anything, the Apollo 13 disaster proved that NASA nuclear safety engineering worked."

Keith's note: Compared to the Soviet Union's abandoned and rotting submarine fleet and the vast amount of industrial crud we pour into the oceans, I suspect that this heavily-clad RTG, miles under the ocean, is a trivial problem.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on November 28, 2011 10:15 PM.

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