From: email@example.com (Dickey Bradley F) Organization: Bryn Mawr College Date: 23 Feb 94 12:05:51 PST References: 1 2 3 4 Followups: 1
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In article <firstname.lastname@example.org> John.Stone@bris.ac.uk writes: > > I understand that 747's (and possibly others) carry depleted uranium in > the nose for ballast - lots of mass in a small volume. Don't suppose > you could say that _they_ were badly designed :-) Does create a bit of > local concern when they crash, though. I think that the isotope they carry is the U^238, which is a harmless and non-radioactive one (well, OK a bit radioactive, but so is Connecticut). The report of this indeed caused a stir during the Lockebie incident, when the locals found out about it. The Scottish environmental groups realized that there was no danger, and let it lie; I do remember one spokesman for GreenPeace, I think, who was reported to say; "I would be more afraid of the thing dropping on my head than of the danger to the environment later" [sic]. So Pan Am certainly was using Uranium as balast, supposed to be quite cheap, as well as the qualities you mention - small and heavy. Brad_.