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Radioactive Clean-up

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Radioactive, nuclear, or radiation clean-up is considered the most dangerous, difficult, and costly remediation activity after a nuclear disaster or accident.  The contamination may be found in the air, water, and soil, as wells as equipment and buildings (USEPA, 2010).Radioactive material, unlike most matter, is inherently unstable. Over time, the nuclei of radioactive atoms emit what's known as ionizing radiation, which can come in three primary forms: alpha particles, beta particles and gamma rays. Under certain circumstances, any of the three can harm humans, stealing electrons from atoms and destroying chemical bonds (Atteberry, 2011). Unlike alpha and beta particles, however, gamma rays can pass directly through the body, wreaking havoc in the process and faulty attempts by the body to repair that damage can lead to cancerous cells (Atteberry, 2011). Scientists and engineers are still studying the process and the period of treating the environment with radioactive materials.

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