Traces of nuclear explosions from the past have embedded themselves in our biosphere, and according to a new study, have even found their way into the deepest part of our ocean.
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Scientists discovered radioactive traces from nuclear bombs in the Mariana Trench…and inside you.
Inside all of us, really. There are actually traces of bomb carbon everywhere.
Traces of carbon-14, a special radioactive isotope, surged into the atmosphere after decades of nuclear weapon tests.
A new study published in the American Geophysical Union (AGU) found the first evidence of radioactive carbon from nuclear bomb tests in the Mariana Trench—specifically tucked inside the muscle tissue of a crustacean in the hadal trench.
The amount of carbon-14 in our atmosphere nearly doubled between 1955-1963, which just so happens to be the time when we were setting off hundreds of nuclear bombs.
After the nuclear bomb tests stopped, the concentration of bomb carbon in the atmosphere started to go down, but the carbon-14 hung around in the atmosphere until the radioactive carbon combined with oxygen resulting in carbon dioxide that was then pulled out of Earth’s atmosphere incorporating into the biosphere and into the oceans.
Learn more about how bomb carbon was found in the Mariana Trench, and why bomb carbon is still such a pervasive part of our environment today in this episode of Focal Point.
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