Links – October 21, 2015

How do you find plutonium? Go to nuclear inspector school. All IAEA inspectors are trained at Los Alamos. NPR reporter Geoff Brumfiel went with one group. The plutonium can he mentions was designed by my team back in the 1990s, if it’s the one in this LANL photo. And back when I started at Los Alamos, the orientation included passing around a nickel-plated plutonium hemisphere. It was warm.

An explanation of how sanctions will be lifted on Iran.

There’s a fair bit of commentary about how Russia is winning the day, embarassing the US, showing its might, and other glorifications of Putin’s military adventure in Syria. A great many aren’t looking much at facts. Here are actual numbers and equipment that we know is there. Enough to support an operation to keep Assad in power, but not overwhelming power. I tend more toward this kind of interpretation.

Hard to tell from this report what happened with this fire at a radwaste disposal site in Nevada. Was it a big fire? What was on fire? How long did it burn? Was the firefighting response adequate? Looking for followup.

WIPP is coming back from its radiation release.

More cleanup is needed in Palomares, Spain, where four hydrogen bombs fell.

The Russian secret service now plans to vet scientific papers before publication.

Why Pakistan is opening up about its nuclear program.

Current controversies: Why it’s okay to block ads. Also, Nuclear Diner doesn’t carry ads.