I agree with those who think the Iran agreement should be supported, first because nothing better seems to be available, second because I suspect that technological means of supervision (to avoid a global catastrophe), are available in the USA. Here is what I have just posted on that subject, at an Internet forum for physics teachers:
" ... How can one detect the strongly-enriched uranium, placed either inside or outside of a bomb? I am sure that nuclear physicists have been addressing this problem, in the context of inspecting vessels arriving to our ports, or crossing our borders.
One possible approach is to irradiate a suspected object with a source of slow neutrons (for example, a Cf-252 source surrounded by pure graphite or paraffin). The slow neutrons, in turn, would induce fission; fission fragments would be gamma radioactive and gamma rays would be detectable from outside the suspected material. ... " The idea is simple, but it presents some practical difficulties, as always. For example, how can one distinguish gamma rays emitted by fission products in the enriched uranium from the gamma rays emitted by fission products in the Cf-252 source? Will the method work despite the presence of the cosmic background?
Ludwik Kowalski, a retired nuclear physicist (see Wikipedia)
Discuss Middle East Politics here.
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