S Korea Finds Xenon-133 Isotopes in Air After Pyongyang’s Nuclear Test

S Korea Finds Xenon-133 Isotopes in Air After Pyongyang’s Nuclear Test

According to reports, South Korean Nuclear Safety and Security Commission experts detected xenon radionuclides in air samples collected in the country after North Korea’s nuclear test.


South Korean Nuclear Safety and Security Commission experts detected xenon radionuclides in air samples collected in the country after North Korea’s latest nuclear test, according to a statement made by the commission on Friday.

Radioxenon isotopes are noble gases that are mainly produced in the nuclear fission reaction of uranium or plutonium. South Korea has registered xenon radionuclides after previous nuclear tests carried out by Pyongyang.

"As a result of an analysis of the samples gathered by September 8, samples of Xenon-133 radionuclides were detected on the permanently attached devices on the Earth’s surface," the statement of the commission said, stressing that the current level of radiation remains at a normal level and carries no threat to the population and environment.

The experts are now analyzing inflow paths of xenon to determine whether the radionuclides came from North Korea.

On Sunday, North Korea announced it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb that could be mounted onto an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). This is the sixth nuclear tests carried out by the country. Just days before the test, Pyongyang launched a missile over Japanese territory.

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