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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Old TV tubes converted into radiation-shielding material, Japan

Tubes from old television sets can be recycled into radiation-proof materials suitable for use at temporary storage sites for contaminated soil and waste, two Japanese companies have found.

Shimizu Corp., a general contractor in Tokyo, and R Japan Corp., a manufacturer of eco-friendly products in Ginowan, Okinawa Prefecture, developed concrete and waterproof materials, respectively, using television tubes ground into a form that can help shield against radiation.

The method takes advantage of the fact that cathode-ray tube (CRT) glass in television sets contains lead, which can shield against radiation. It is expected to be utilized at temporary storage sites for radioactive soil and waste.

While a 50-centimeter-thick chunk of concrete can lower the doses of penetrating radiation to a hundredth of the original amount, Shimizu Corp. found that the doses can be even lowered to one two-hundredth by replacing most of the crushed stone used in the concrete with ground television tubes. The strength of the two types of concrete was almost the same. Read More