Find the missing radioactive capsule in Australia

Australian authorities sent personnel and additional equipment on Tuesday to search for a capsule containing cesium that was recently lost in transit.

The Australian Fire Service and the relevant ministry announced on Monday that it would take five days to adjust the entire 1,400km route of the capsule-carrying truck. On Tuesday, it was announced that they had managed to recover 600 km of the road so far.

The capsule is part of a device used to determine the iron content of mined iron ore, which was manufactured by SGS Australia for mining company Rio Tinto and was meant to be delivered to logistics company Centurion. According to the authorities’ suspicion, the capsule was lost from its carrier due to vibrations that affected the cargo and it fell out of the truck as a result.

The loss of the capsule was discovered on January 25 when the shipment had reached its destination at a warehouse on the outskirts of Perth and the equipment had been unloaded.

Search teams track the shipment’s path with special radiometers.

The device can detect radiation emitted by the missing capsule and is currently being used in the Perth metropolitan area and remote areas

– Tell Daryl Rayevent manager in the Fire and Disaster Management Division.

The capsule is 6 millimeters in diameter and 8 millimeters long, made of silver, and contains the radioactive isotope cesium-137, which emits radioactive radiation equivalent to 10 X-ray machines per hour.

The authorities asked people not to approach the capsule more than five meters if they found it, because the radioactive radiation could cause burns and radiation sickness.

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