Depleted Uranium (way OT)

Doug Tymofichuk dougt at
Wed Mar 8 16:04:26 CET 2000

On Wed, 8 Mar 2000 00:02:13 -0500 KA4HJH <ka4hjh at> 

> >BTW, anyone know what the chance of survival is for 
> someone with DU >contamination in a wound?
> Well, the cause of death probably won't be radiation 
> poisoning--the U238 nucleus is notoriously stable. How 
> toxic is uranium itself?

Actually, depleted uranium is always slightly radioactive, 
never completely pure U238, so it's something you should 
stay away from. Lead would be a better choice for home use, 
although it is much softer. If the shell actually 
contaminated the wound (seems unlikely, it should just pass 
right through the body, shouldn't it?) then it depends on 
the amount of depleted uranium present, its proximity to 
sensitive organs, the amount of possible uptake into the 
bloodstream, and the length of time of exposure. I believe 
that uranium is fairly toxic (like lead), so that would 
also be a concern. Taking into account all of this, I agree 
that radiation and toxicity would probably be the least of 
your worries.
> BTW, anybody know where I can get some of those spend 
> rounds? I'd just like to have some to show off, although I 
> hear DU is great for weighting model locomotives.

*BAD* idea, unless you happen to live in an area of low 
background radiation and need a boost. Low level radiation 
is thought to be important for good health, much like most 
trace elements; a little is good, lots will kill you.
Doug Tymofichuk
dougt at

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