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Radioactive Contamination Cleaned Up with Blue Goo

28 May 2011 No Comment

The task of cleaning up the nuclear contamination in affected parts of Fukushima is a huge one. Hazmat crews have been working hard to clean up the area hit my the earthquake and tsunami which caused the state of emergency at the nuclear power plants. The traditional way of cleaning up such a mess is pretty low tech; soap, water and brushes. The problem with this method is that contaminated cleaning water could lead to further contamination of close surrounding, soil and water. Japanese officials are now using a clever new method that addresses this problem.

Decongel is a gooey blue liquid developed in Hawaii. To treat an affected area, the goo can be brushed, troweled, or painted on. After it drys, it forms a film that traps the radioactive waste within its surface. The film can then be peeled off and disposed of safely. One hundred five-gallon pails of Decongel were donated to Japan to aid in the clean up effort. It is currently being used to clean concrete surfaces and buildings in and outside of the evacuated zones in Fukushima.

The makers of the blue goo hope that a version for regular household cleaning will be available in future. Imagine how clean your floors would be. Here is a video with Hawaiian news coverage of the product last year, when it was sought out by clean ups crews in the BP oil spill.

CNN Money via PopSci

Dayne Barton
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