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Idaho State University was fined last week for losing a small amount of radioactive, weapons-grade plutonium that is too small to make a nuclear bomb, but could be used in a dirty bomb, according to a regulatory commission.
Dr. Cornelis Van der Schyf, vice president for research at the university, blamed partially completed paperwork from 15 years ago as the school tried to dispose of the plutonium.
The article goes on to state the following:
“Unfortunately, because there was a lack of sufficient historical records to demonstrate the disposal pathway employed in 2003, the source in question had to be listed as missing,” he said in a statement to The Associated Press. “The radioactive source in question poses no direct health issue or risk to public safety.”
The school, which reported the material missing on Oct. 13, was hit with an $8,500 fine and has 30 days to dispute the measure.
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