Listen up North Korea. Want to know how to split the atom? Ask a Swede – they do it in the kitchen.

August 7, 2011

Do you have a smoke detector? Is it the optical variant or the ionising type? Whats that, You don’t know? Well, lets put it another way. Is it old or is it new? Because if it has been sitting on your ceiling for longer than you can remember, silently flashing its wears at you, waiting for the day when all of your belongings go up in a ball of flames so it can emit its life saving high pitched scream at your confused, sleeping ears, then Richard Handl from Sweden could have used it in his scientific bid to split the atom in his own kicthen. He cant now because the Swedish police have confiscated his nuclear material because, even in Sweden, creating nuclear experiments in your kitchen, or indeed anywhere in your house, without the proper permission and licenses, is a no-no. Which, apart from anything else, raises the question: If he had had permission, would concocting a imitation of the fishbowl Marshall Islands in his Ikea clad kitchen have been legal? One suspects not.

Boson nuclear colider in swedish kitchen

But why smoke alarms you ask? Because in order to split the atom, as our friend in Sweden set out to do, you need something to split; and that something needs to be making gyger counters have epileptic fits. Sitting in the bellys of these UFO shaped life rafts, or at least the aforementioned ionising type, is a small amount of Americium (Am-241) with a half life of 432 years. To layman’s such as you and me, that’s nuclear. Take another look at that pale, IBM-beige box on your ceiling and revel in the fact that 15,000 years after you, IT will still be going strong.

What North Korea fail to do, a swedish man does in his microwave

Forsaking the hyperbole, its pretty tame really, especially when you consider Uranium 238 has a half life of 700 million years. In order to get the required amount, Richard Handl would have needed over 100 smoke alarms, and smoke alarms are not very romantic. So what else could he use? Radium? It is much more effective than the puny Americium, has a half life of  1599 years and is found in almost all watches and clocks dating back to before the 1950, after which  it was made illegal for being too fucking dangerous. Yes, it made your nice Swiss made clock hands glow in the dark but it also made you glow in the dark whilst simultaneously burning your retinas within an inch of their mucus coated lives. You can get hold of truck loads of these clocks and watches on Ebay, for practially nothing. Yeah for the Internet.

This little fucker is what all the fuss is about. Learn how to split it and the world, as they say, is yours

So Geiger counter and the necessary ingredients in place, Mr. Handl set about splitting the atom in his own kitchen. Over the course of a number of months and all the while posting updates on his blog, You can read it here. It is written in grammatically bad, at times comedy English, adding a coating of potential hoax to the whole proceedings, almost like Borat. At this time Take The Blame™ is still unsure about the authenticity of the experiments. Why, for example, is a 31 year old nuclear scientist cracking neutrons in his kitchen and not working in a nuclear collider in Geneva? The following comes from the site.

“No, it not so dangerous. But I tried to cook Americium, Radium and Beryllium in 96% sulphuric-acid, to easier get them blended. But the whole thing exploded upp in the air…Of cource I thrown away my pills at the left side, and I didn’t drink the juice-syryp in the right.”

“Once I borrowed a very, very expensive geiger-counter from a hospital. It was very accurate, but it costed about $ 12 000.”

After one of his experiments went a little haywire and caused a miniature nuclear meltdown on his stove Mr Handl called the scientists at the Swedish radiation experiment laboratory to guide him on his mission. The nuclear police blew the door down and confiscated the material. Experiment over.

Photos of the meltdown clearly show Mr Handl was a smoker

So, The North Koreans can’t do, The Iranians can’t do, Syria can’t do it, The Russians nearly blew up the world trying to do it, but a Swedish man nearly did it in his microwave.

Take The Blame™ doesn’t know. Is it inept to try to split the atom in your kitchen? Maybe, but its also pretty impressive. Maybe the ineptitude is on behalf of the nuclear police of Sweden who didn’t notice a man posting pictures of nuclear meltdowns on the Internet, whilst explaining how he was attempting to split the atom in his kitchen. Maybe the ineptitude lies at the feet of the Axis of Evil who cant, thankfully, do what appears pretty straight forward, at least on a micro scale.

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2 Responses to Listen up North Korea. Want to know how to split the atom? Ask a Swede – they do it in the kitchen.

  1. Neil Killion on August 10, 2011 at 12:02 am

    Fascinating article. Great piece of research. It’s the sort of thing I would get onto myself because at 31 Mr. Handl is in a ‘Year of Broken Pathways’…….which hands you a challenge…….and this fits the bill

  2. thechef on September 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm

    Thanks Neil.. You have to admire someone who creates, or at least attempts, nuclear fission in their own kitchen. However dangerous. Its better than Playstation.

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