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Antarctica’s ice sheets contain radioactive chlorine gas for 60 years after the nuclear tests, says a study

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An explosive new study has revealed that, almost 60 years after nuclear tests were carried out in the Pacific Ocean, the radioactive chlorine was still leaking out of the ice sheets on the Antarctic continent.

The report claims that the chlorine-36 has been found in the Vostok part of the continent, and, after he tested weapons in the Pacific ocean.

“There is no greater nuclear -, chlorine-36 in the atmosphere. That is why we need to notice is natural and chlorine-36 levels from anywhere,” said one of the study’s co-author, Mélanie Baroni, in a statement.

The new survey can be found in a number of the glaciers in Antarctica are still in the release of radioactive chlorine-36 was produced during the mid-1950s, the testing of nuclear weapons. (Credit: NASA/Joe MacGregor)

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The researchers tested for two different areas in the Antarctic to determine the level of chlorine-36, and Talos Dome, as well as a Vostok.

At Talos Dome, a radioactive isotope dropped in the period between 1910 and 1980, while the Vostok was not.

“In the late 1950s, this entry, pulse has led to an increase of the 36Cl-concentration in the Talos Dome is more than 100 times higher than that of the pre‐ and post‐bomb values,” the study abstract states. “It is a remarkable fact that in the sphere of the Vostok remains polluted due to anthropogenic 36Cl today.”

1 / 1Vostok and Talos Dome, as both are shown on the map of Antarctica. Vostok is still the release of anthropogenic chlorine-36 in the atmosphere. (Credit: AGU)

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The abstract went on to say, “This pollution results from gaseous and liquid H36Cl the mobility at low-accumulation sites, and will involve a re‐issue of 36Cl from the snowpack, that has not been observed in the Talos Dome.”

At the end of the 1980s, the chlorine-36 was four times as high as expected, in the Talos Dome. By 2008, the chlorine-36 levels in the Vostok was nearly 10 times what would be expected, of course, the researchers found, is an indication that it was still leaking into the environment.

The study is published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres.

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