Bulgaria Busts Materials for Radioactive Synthesis

Politics | September 19, 2005, Monday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0
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Bulgaria's police in the northeastern Danube city Russe have nabbed more than 3 kg of materials that could be used for radioactive synthesis.

At a special press conference held in Russe it was explained that the operation is of great importance for Bulgaria's national security. The material busted is hafnium and it is the first time that such a material is found in Bulgaria.

The hafnium was found in a car traveling to Romania with one Bulgarian and three Romanian nationals.

The material is on the list of the goods with double usage, organized-crime fight chief Gen. Valentin Petrov said in an interview for private bTV channel. He also explained that the materials could be used in the military industry.

Hafnium is a ductile metal with a brilliant silver luster. Its properties are considerably influenced by the impurities of zirconium present. Because hafnium has a good absorption cross section for thermal neutrons, has excellent mechanical properties, and is extremely corrosion resistant, it is used for reactor control rods. Hafnium has been successfully alloyed with iron, titanium, niobium, tantalum, and other metals.

Hafnium carbide is the most refractory binary composition known and the nitride is the most refractory of all known metal nitrides.
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