WASHINGTON, D.C.— The National Nuclear Security Administration, in partnership with the Russian Federation, has successfully completed the removal of 14 Russian radioisotope thermoelectric generators, or RTGs, from the Northern Sea Route. These devices, which contain high-activity radioactive sources, powered navigational beacons along Russia’s northern coastline. With this removal, the U.S. Department of Energy has completed its efforts to recover RTGs along the Northern Sea Route, a press release said.
RTGs were used for many years in Russia to generate electrical power at remote locations, including lighthouses and navigational beacons. The 14 RTGs recently recovered by DOE contain more than one million curies of strontium-90, a high-activity radioisotope that could be used in a dirty bomb. [Read more…]