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Swedish Man Arrested for Building a Nuclear Reactor in His Kitchen

Apparently a Swedish man has been reprimanded for attempting to build a homemade nuclear reactor.

31-year-old Richard Handl foiled his own plans to construct a homemade nuclear reactor when he called the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority in July to ask if he was even allowed to build it.  His seemingly harmless attempt to inquire as to the legalities of his research led to Swedish authorities storming Handl’s home in the small coastal town of Angelholm.

"We realized he probably had radioactive material at his home which you are not allowed to have without a permit, which was why the authorities decided to inspect his home," said Swedish Radiation Safety Authority research director Leif Moberj.

The extensive inspection of Handl’s home uncovered radioactive material, including small amounts of Americium-241, an isotope commonly found in home smoke detectors.  It is illegal to remove Americium-241 from smoke detectors as it can be very harmful if inhaled or swallowed.  However, tests revealed that the amounts found in Handl’s home were not enough to warrant any danger to neighbors.  The agency has yet to reveal what other types of radioactive materials were found.

Handl was quoted in the Helsingborgs Dagblad newspaper saying that he owns his own Geiger counter and had noticed no problems with radiation while conducting his experiments.  His plan for a homemade reactor was never completed, although he reportedly had purchased most of what was needed to build one.  All of his equipment has been confiscated by Swedish authorities.  Handle told the newspaper that in the future he plans to keep his work strictly theoretical to avoid such investigations.

Moberj added that the incident was “extremely unusual.  I haven’t heard of any similar things ever,” he said.

While Richard Handl’s plan to build his own small-scale nuclear reactor was foiled, I must applaud his candor.  The garage scientists of the world are the unsung heroes of the energy arena.  Tinkering in their workshops to develop exotic new ways to generate energy is exactly the kind of entrepreneurial spirit that will transform the energy sector and help truly achieve energy independence.  While well-funded universities and billion dollar companies certainly pump out some amazing energy breakthroughs, homebound researchers aren’t limited by grant guidelines or third-party funding specifications, and are truly free to explore the boundaries of science.  Kudos to all you garage scientists out there; but in your quest for the next big energy breakthrough, just be sure you’re not risking your health or the health of others with, say, illegal radioactive materials.

By. John Shimkus of Energy Digital




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  • Anonymous on August 10 2011 said:
    Beginning 10 years or so ago, and lasting up to a couple of years ago, it was illegal in Sweden to do research on nuclear energy. Can you imagine that? Can you imagine how that could be the situation in a civilized country? Well it was, which goes to show the power of stupidity.
  • Anonymous on August 10 2011 said:
    I recall that a neurotic boy scout tried to build a nuclear reactor in his home and he came darn close to succeeding. He used the following: Americium from used smoke detectors, thorium from lantern mantles, and I guess he got hold of beryllium (VERY TOXIC!) from somewhere. Alpha particles from the Americium strike beryllium atoms, which results in neutrons, which impact thorium atoms, which given enough time will produce U-233. All said neurotic boy scout accomplished, was to create a radioactive mess. But think about it: He was not far from bringing about nuclear fission in his own back yard.
  • Anonymous on August 17 2011 said:
    In the 1960's I had a home laboratory and was easily able to procure labware, glassware and chemicals. Now US States have created shell Lab Supply, Plant grow supply and Army Suplus Stores which are all sting operations with outside and inside multi-CCTV to record and track all customers, the license plates and all personal information they are stupid enough to give or share. Those shell shops and supply houses feed that information directly to local police forces, FBI and CIA outlets for those stupid enough to purchase using a non-cash transaction and not on foot or a bicycle. FBI has recently added 'Survival Preparation' items to it's terrorist watch list, that's how utterly paranoid and insane the Zionist led US Government has become.Here in America, many Americans are now seeing just how utterly depraved and corrupt East Germany became!

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