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Radiation Exposure Handbook, Airport Bombing in Turkey, Nuclear Brexit

Topics in this issue include radiation exposure handbook for clinicians, hazardous rail shipment security, and the airport bombing in Turkey.

Turkey Says Airport Bombers Were from Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Uzbekistan

The three suicide bombers who killed 44 people at Istanbul’s main international airport this week have been identified as citizens of Russia, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, Turkish officials said Thursday. Turkey, which has blamed the Islamic State for the attack, carried out raids across the country on Thursday, detaining 13 people, including three foreigners, in connection with the attack. NY Times >>

Handbook Offers Guidance to Doctors on Radiation

A new handbook has been compiled with the help of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to better prepare medical staff to communicate with the public about possible health effects of radiation during and after a nuclear or radiological emergency. World Nuclear News >>

Simon Ramo Dies at 103; Helped Develop ICBMs in the Cold War

Simon Ramo, an engineer and entrepreneur who helped develop the rocket technology that changed the nature of the Cold War’s nuclear face-off and powered the first Americans into space, died on Monday in Santa Monica, Calif. He was 103. NY Times >>

Nuclear Brexit

Insofar as pundits have speculated about the international security implications of Brexit, they have pointed out that British diplomats will be so focused on renegotiating trade agreements with the rest of the world that they will devote fewer resources to the turmoil in the Middle East and simmering tension with Russia, and that Britain will therefore be a less reliable ally for the United States. (This partly explains why Russian President Vladimir Putin greeted Brexit with a grin.) They assume, though, that Britain will remain strongly committed to NATO. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists >>

NTSB Schedules Roundtable on Hazard Rail Shipments

The National Transportation Safety Board announced it will host a roundtable discussion in Washington, D.C., on July 13 on the safety of transporting flammable liquids such as crude oil and ethanol by rail. The event is planned for 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with representatives from the railroad industry, railcar manufacturers and owners, and industry associations attending to discuss the progress of moving to a new and stronger rail tank car, the DOT 117. Occupational Health & Safety >>

Parts of Gas Plant Explode Overnight in Mississippi

No one was injured Monday night in explosions and a fire at a natural gas plant in southern Mississippi, authorities said.  Jackson County Emergency Management Director Early Etheridge said the first explosion happened at 11:30 p.m., followed by a larger explosion several minutes later. Etheridge said the second blast could be felt up to 10 miles away. Chem.info >>

The Double-Edged Sword: US Nuclear Command and Control Modernization

Last month the General Accountability Office announced that parts of the command and control system used to manage US nuclear weapons rely on eight-inch floppy disks, an IBM Series/1 computer, and other hardware that is more than 50 years old. So old in fact that many parts for these systems have long since ceased to be manufactured or stocked.  Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists >>

How to Slow President Trump from Pushing the Nuclear Button

As Donald Trump would say, “many people are saying” that having Trump’s finger on the metaphorical nuclear button makes them uncomfortable. Very uncomfortable. Of all the things Washington dislikes about Trump, the prospect of nuclear power at his fingertip has become one of the most concerning aspects of his potential presidency. Defense One >>

Libyans Are Winning the Battle Against the Islamic State

On a windswept dune east of this city’s port, a young Libyan fighter with binoculars crouches between clumps of reeds, calling out corrections for mortar fire against an Islamic State sniper ensconced in a hotel 2,000 feet away. A booming retort is followed seconds later by a thud. Carnegie Endowment >>

Confronting Plutonium Nationalism in Northeast Asia

Although President Obama trumpeted his commitment to nuclear disarmament at this year’s Washington Nuclear Security Summit and more recently during his visit to Hiroshima, the White House has so far only discussed in whispers a far more pressing nuclear weapons-related danger—that Japan and China may soon be separating thousands of nuclear bombs worth of plutonium from nuclear spent fuel each year. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists >>

CPR Outcomes May Be Better with Heavier Rescuers

The odds of surviving a cardiac arrest are higher if the rescuer performing CPR is heavier in weight and has upper body strength, researchers say. “Our results confirm that the heaviest people perform CPR better than those who are underweight,” they report in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine. Reuters >>

What They Said Then, What We Know Now About the Iran Nuclear Deal

Nearly one year ago, the United States and its international partners reached a landmark agreement with Iran that would curtail Tehran’s nuclear program in exchange for robust sanctions relief. In multiple speeches, interviews, and congressional hearings that followed, U.S. officials defended the accord, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Foreign Policy Initiative >>

The Eighth US-China Conference on Arms Control, Disarmament, and Nonproliferation

This track-one-and-a-half conference was the eighth in a series of bilateral conferences bringing together government officials and nongovernmental experts from the United States and China. The discussions were divided into five panels and covered a wide range of issues including: nuclear security and safeguards; expanding cooperation in arms control and nonproliferation; steps toward nuclear disarmament; improving US-China strategic stability; and trends and future challenges. James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies >>

SATAN’s Code: The Early Years of Accident Models

In 1959, Battelle Memorial Institute developed an early Loss-of-Coolant-Accident model for a heavy-water plutonium reactor. The program was run on an IBM-650/653, the first mass production computer ever developed. The 650 weighed more than a 1955 Cadillac Deville, had vacuum tubes, and used a punch-card reader. Even if it had the memory and someone willing to load the 50 million cards, it would take six months to boot up Microsoft Windows 7. U.S. NRC >>

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