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E. Coli Can Be Used To Clean Up Nuclear Waste

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the make-yourself-useful dept.

Biotech 102

jerryjamesstone writes "Researchers have found that E. coli can be used to recover uranium from tainted waters and can even be used to clean up nuclear waste. Using the bacteria along with inositol phosphate, the bacteria breaks down the phosphate — also called phytic acid — to free the phosphate molecules. The phosphate then binds to the uranium forming a uranium-phosphate precipitate on the cells of the bacteria. Those cells can then be harvested to recover the uranium." What has made this 14-year-old process economically feasible is the use of inositol phosphate, which is a cheap waste material from the production feedstock from plant material.

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Just cuddling (4, Funny)

Goffee71 (628501) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501631)

Surely the e-coli just wants to cuddle up to something warm, nothing unusual in that

I for one... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501649)

I for one welcome our new radioactive, disease spreading overlords!

Re:I for one... (1)

AmIAnAi (975049) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502397)

My first thought was along these lines too. Will the Uranium promote mutation into more deadly forms? I hope the Uranium (and E-coli) recovery is going to be tightly controlled

Re:I for one... (1)

wastedlife (1319259) | more than 5 years ago | (#29504933)

This is highly unlikely. While exposure to radioactivity promotes mutation, nearly all of it is fatal or detrimental to the mutant. Remember that the radiation is causing mutation by creating breaks in the DNA strands, basically causing irreparable damage.

Mutations and environment (1)

mollog (841386) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506051)

Actually, I think the radioactivity will create viable mutations. But then those mutants need a niche that is exploitable by their particular mutation.

But all this mutation talk seems like it's off-topic. I'm more interested to hear more about this technique of precipitating metals using phytic acid.

We have large uranium mine tailings that need to be cleaned up. We also have other radioactive materials that need to be neutralized.

Also, I wonder if this technique can be used to extract materials such as Hafnium, now widely sought out for its use in processors.

Re:Mutations and environment (1)

wastedlife (1319259) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506995)

Yes, it is possible some viable mutants will result. However, would the chances be any higher of producing a strain of E. coli that are deadlier to humans? I doubt it.

Back on topic, is the uranium-phosphate that is produced still radioactive, or does this just make it easier to extract and remove from the environment?

Re:I for one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29507601)

Using E. Coli is irrelevant if we use Nicholas Cage to remove nuclear waste. Oh wait, I was thinking of his acting in his last couple of movies.

Re:I for one... (1)

Eudial (590661) | more than 5 years ago | (#29510979)

Besides, bacteria mutate at a very high rate as it is, since they have such short generation gaps.

So even if some radiation-induced mutations survive, it's probably not going to be a significant increase in mutation rate.

Re:I for one... (4, Informative)

Sylver Dragon (445237) | more than 5 years ago | (#29505875)

It's not really a worry.

First off, naturally occurring Uranium isn't all that radioactive. For the most part its U238, which doesn't give off much radiation. And, spent reactor fuel is even more skewed towards U238, otherwise known as Depleted Uranium, the stuff the military uses for armor piercing bullets. You can hold either of this stuff in your bare hands and not have any ill effects. One thing to keep in mind with radioactive materials, the stuff which has half lives of millions or billions of years (U238 is 4.46 billion years, U235 is 703 Million years) isn't producing a heck of a lot of ionizing radiation. The problem with Uranium is that it is a toxic heavy metal, and like other toxic heavy metals (lead, thorium) it will deposit in your internal organs, build up and eventually kill you.

The second problem with the mutated E. Coli of Death is that the vast majority of mutations will result death fairly quickly. Of the ones which don't, they will probably just result in death slowly. Yes, the E. Coil could get some sort of useful mutation out of it, but it's not really more likely to happen in this cleanup site than anywhere else.

Re:I for one... (1)

Ladysman3621 (947228) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506559)

Don't forget that U234 decays into Rn222 which is where this lovely gas comes from. Given enough uranium, the concentration of radon will build up to deadly amounts.

Re:I for one... (1)

TheGreenNuke (1612943) | more than 5 years ago | (#29513429)

Actually U-234 decays to Th-230, from Th-230 to Ra-226, then Ra-226 to Rn-222. And the half lives of Th-230 and Ra-226 are in the thousands of years, where Rn-222 is like 4 days. The Rn-222 produced from the decay chain of Uranium-234 should thus deplete much faster than the chain creates more.

Re:I for one... (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#29508153)

You can hold either of this stuff in your bare hands and not have any ill effects.

Boy to people always forget the fourth dimension.
The question is *how long* you can do that, and *how strong* the effects will be.

Without time, I could say that I can hold my hand into fire. (For some milliseconds.)

The problem with Uranium is that it is a toxic heavy metal, and like other toxic heavy metals (lead, thorium) it will deposit in your internal organs, build up and eventually kill you.

Aaah... There's the (partial) answer. ;)

Re:I for one... (1)

OrangeMonkey11 (1553753) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502689)

Or the bacteria can give us all super powers

Re:I for one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29503037)

You mean you don't have yours yet?!

Re:I for one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29517013)

Would it not be simpler to just use Nuke-a-way?

Radioactive e-coli? (4, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501673)

Someone's bound to get bitten, and then what?

Will e-coliman protect us from the villains?

Re:Radioactive e-coli? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501747)

I know, if ever a story needed a "whatcouldpossiblygoright" tag, this one is it

Re:Radioactive e-coli? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29502253)

Nah man, you are getting it the wrong way around, E-coliman IS the villain.

You'll need to wait for Antibioticman to be born... or something.
Get to it Science!

Re:Radioactive e-coli? (2, Funny)

MadKeithV (102058) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502291)

I prefer bacteriophageman.
He's got that dark, brooding, lone wolf hero thing going.

Re:Radioactive e-coli? (1)

Agent of Nowhere (1392777) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502899)

and who e-colis the ecoliman?

Re:Radioactive e-coli? (3, Funny)

Jesus_666 (702802) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506083)

I, myself, am partial to the name "Diarrheaper".

Re:Radioactive e-coli? (0)

zonker (1158) | more than 5 years ago | (#29512487)

Yeah I've seen how this movie ends...

Ingenious (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501677)

So a combined chemical and biological threat can defeat a nuclear one, after all!

Re:Ingenious (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501839)

Truly the modern age has arrived when rock, paper, scissors is replaced by chemical, biological and nuclear...

Re:Ingenious (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501863)

So a combined chemical and biological threat can defeat a nuclear one, after all!

The damage rolls back at 255.

If you find yourself in a chemical, biological, nuclear zone, shoot yourself in the head every five seconds or so.

Re:Ingenious (5, Funny)

selven (1556643) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501947)

If you ever find yourself in a chemical, biological nuclear zone with a guy shooting you in the head every five seconds or so, take out your laptop and read this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_immortality [wikipedia.org]

Re:Ingenious (2, Funny)

kalirion (728907) | more than 5 years ago | (#29503463)

Dude, how many universes must you post that in? Give it a rest already!

Re:Ingenious (1)

The_mad_linguist (1019680) | more than 5 years ago | (#29509605)

I just bind quicksave and quickload to the left and right mouse buttons.

But your way works too.

Re:Ingenious (1)

martas (1439879) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502097)

that's an unclear threat...

Bad timing (4, Funny)

celibate for life (1639541) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501691)

Had they discovered that a couple of years ago they could have used all that e-coli infested frozen spinach that went to waste!

Re:Bad timing (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501727)

It's okay, we've got a few e-coli infested "petting farms" in the UK at the moment ;)

Re:Bad timing (4, Funny)

master5o1 (1068594) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501759)

Children are not bacteria. They may seem like it some times, but they're not.

Re:Bad timing (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502341)

Your children multiple at uncontrollable rates without any external interaction? Wow, I'd certainly be worried.

Re:Bad timing (1)

master5o1 (1068594) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502667)

Not my children, but I do know some people that seem to reproduce at near bacteria level speeds.

Re:Bad timing (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502833)

Additionally, they have all the intelligence of a single-celled organism.

Re:Bad timing (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 5 years ago | (#29505577)

No, they're below bacteria. Bacteria are at least atheists.

Re:Bad timing (1)

tweekie (1637593) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506019)

Children are not bacteria. They may seem like it some times, but they're not.

True, at least antibiotics can kill off most bacteria. Children continue to survive. Mmmm, radioactive bacteria. At least next time I eat contaminated beef my skin should have a nice healthy glow.

Re:Bad timing (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#29508553)

Well, counted by mass percentage, they might as well be.

two birds (1)

X10 (186866) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501707)

Doesn't e-coli live in sewers? So if we use sewer content to cool nuclear reactors, e-coli kills the nuclear waste and the reactor kills e-coli: two birds with one stone....

dirty skanky bastards (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502205)

E coli lives up buttholes. Human and animal. Instead of running around like headless chickens people should learn to wash their goddam hands already, especially if they've been near buttholes or stuff that comes out of them or xcreature likely to have rolled around in stuff that comes out of them. Problem solved, hardly rocket fucking science is it?

Re:dirty skanky bastards (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502845)

But then the radiation will get them!

Hah! then... (4, Funny)

garompeta (1068578) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501721)

Does it mean that McDonalds is a safe place to hide in a nuclear war?

Re:Hah! then... (2, Funny)

Centurix (249778) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501761)

I'd say the nuclear waste has a shorter half life than a McDonalds burger. The waste is probably easier to digest for the poor thing. Think of the E.Coli!

Re:Hah! then... (1)

OxyFrog (727507) | more than 5 years ago | (#29507295)

I'd really, really hope that nuclear waste has a shorter half life than a McDonald's burger. Shorter half-life = more radioactive than.

Re:Hah! then... (1)

RuBLed (995686) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501785)

Would you really want to?

Re:Hah! then... (3, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501815)

When hunger comes, you'll eat anything.

I mean, sooner or later you'll have no more corpses, and then, you'll have to choose between McDonalds and Spam.

The radiation inmunity just tips the balance to the clown pit.

Re:Hah! then... (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#29508689)

Nah. What's with the plants around you. And if everyone is dead, there will be more food that you could possibly eat.

McDonalds jokes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29502737)

I resent McDonalds bashing jokes.

Their food is perfectly healthy and we had a guy eat McDonands for a whole month to prove it.
He gained one or two (or twenty) extra pounds not much to complain about.

He is alive and well !!!
(is he?)

Oh, Well... (2, Funny)

blcamp (211756) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501723)

Shit happens.

Re:Oh, Well... (1)

courteaudotbiz (1191083) | more than 5 years ago | (#29503797)

Nope. Shit saves the planet!

Great! but only until..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501735)

they will discover that the radiation has mutated the bacteria badly enough to create another disastrous plague...

First post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501801)

Typed on an iPod Touch. Hooray for Apple!

Critical mess (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501817)

One day we will find out that e-coli prefers uranium-235, not long after it happens to make a nice deposit of this benign material.

nucular. (3, Funny)

thhamm (764787) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501905)

i'm sorry, but it's pronounced 'nucular' [youtube.com] .

Re:nucular. (1)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 5 years ago | (#29503153)

"i'm sorry, but it's pronounced 'nucular'."

Wow, I didn't know YouTube has clips of Jimmy Carter's old speeches.

I for one... (0, Offtopic)

kazade84 (1078337) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501933)

I for one welcome our radioactive super powered waste eating bacteria overlords

.... I'll get my coat.

how about diseases (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29501961)

can they also cure atomic radiations patients like those from (Chernobyl for you lot, hey where's my cyrillic)

as a professional microbiologist ... (3, Informative)

acidfast7 (551610) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501965)

i must remind you that it's E. coli NOT E. Coli.

even better would be E. coli, but perhaps I ask too much :(

Re:as a professional microbiologist ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29503331)

Only on /. would we find the a geek bigger than the rest of us. Spelling and grammar in a news article, let alone on /. WHAT was E thinking.

Re:as a professional microbiologist ... (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 5 years ago | (#29503899)

What's the reason for the italic?

Re:as a professional microbiologist ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29504403)

It's a species name. They're all italicized.

Re:as a professional microbiologist ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29504015)

But if this process is successful, maybe we should call it A. coli. If it fails, F. coli.

Re:as a professional microbiologist ... (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#29508257)

Terms should not rely on typography. And the case... what's whit that?
You should learn to back your arguments with something, so you can be taken seriously. :)

Great! (0, Offtopic)

olderphart (787517) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501969)

Now all we have to do is grind up all the uranium-contaminated granite rocks (continental masses) and pour crap on them. Then we'll be safe from the nyucaleer boogyman and all live forever. Bah, humbug.
--
olderphart

Edwina Currie is the answer (1, Troll)

NSN A392-99-964-5927 (1559367) | more than 5 years ago | (#29501987)

She is rather egg-cellent to comment on e-coli.

Conveniently... (1)

davidbrit2 (775091) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502027)

Nuclear E. coli can be used to clean up human waste. So everybody's a winner.

Finally a use for all the defunct petting zoos! (2, Funny)

Tony Hoyle (11698) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502113)

Just build petting zoos on top of nuclear waste dumps. Problem solved! [sky.com]

I for one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29502173)

Welcome our new glowing self-mutating assbug overlords.

Naturally (4, Funny)

bytesex (112972) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502223)

Uranium is the element named after Uranus, right ? No wonder it attracts E.Coli.

depressing... (2, Insightful)

nietsch (112711) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502279)

All those commenters that need to make that very funny joke about E.coli => poop. Man, that was funny when you were 6, not 20 or 30 years later.
But to go back on topic: This looks a bit like a solution looking for a problem. How much low grade uranium waste is there anyway? Or do they propose to use it in primary uranium mining, to make low uranium content ore usable?
Yes there is an unsolved waste problem with uranium fission, but this proposed solution is no solution to that.

Re:depressing... (1)

dunezone (899268) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502333)

Man, that was funny when you were 6, not 20 or 30 years later.

But at 40 and 50 years later its pure comedy once again.

Re:depressing... (1)

jack2000 (1178961) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502413)

The possibility for random mutation of the E. coli is what staggers me, AND they haven't thought of that?! WTF! A whatcouldpossiblygowrong indeed!|

Re:depressing... (1)

Tweenk (1274968) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502555)

99,9...% of random mutations cause premature death. Of the beneficial ones, exactly 0% cause the bacteria to transform into man-eating eldritch abominations. "Dangerous mutants" are a pop culture thing and pretending they are a real possibility is funny.

Re:depressing... (1)

SleazyRidr (1563649) | more than 5 years ago | (#29504835)

I'd say it's slightly more than 0%, but not by much.

Re:depressing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29502443)

Haha. He said poop.

Re:depressing... (1)

papasui (567265) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502599)

I visited one of the Elliot Lake, Ontario mines back in the early 90s. These were primarily Uranium mines and the reason for visiting was my hometown (Crandon, WI) had one of the larger zinc/copper finds in the US. My parents were in fairly respected positions in the community so Exxon/Rio Algom paid for us to go on a little trip up there and take a look at what they proposed for our town. One of the major concerns I recall walking away with was what mining did to the lake. The uranium tailings were directly deposited into Elliot Lake around the 50s and completely killed off the fish and plant life. It had taken nearly 50 years for the plants and fish to begin to recover. Needless to say we walked away not in favor of having a mine opened in our town.

Re:depressing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29504639)

SO you're saying that mining practices from the 50s would have been used to extract the ore and that once again big corporations (were they big in the 50s?) would have dumped their toxic waste into your town's lake?

Hmm sounds like you're a complete idiot. How much money did you turn down? You must not have any public services or poor people who could use a helping hand. Good job.

Re:depressing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29509735)

The process has not changed that much, you fucking idiot.
where else would the tailings go ? (hint: they need a lake - artificial or manmade)

Re:depressing... (2, Interesting)

mayko (1630637) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502859)

It is a solution for a pop culture non-problem. What I mean by that is... All of the people who are irrationally scared of the word "nuclear" have the same fearful position on nuclear power.

"What do we do with the waste? Not in my back yard!!!"

"The run off from uranium mining can rape the local flora. Not in my back yard!!!"

It isn't about solving some huge looming problem. It is about pacification of people's irrational fears so we can actually build nuclear power plants and stop spewing mercury and radioactive ash into the air. Shit, we could even use the plants to split water for hydrogen fuel... then again "hydrogen" is scary too.

If this "solution" can be used to convince people we have all of our all of our bases covered, then it is a very good thing.

Re:depressing... (1)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506203)

It isn't about solving some huge looming problem. It is about pacification of people's irrational fears so we can actually build nuclear power plants and stop spewing mercury and radioactive ash into the air.

By all means, pacify irrational fears.

However, being worried about the environmental impact of uranium mining (beyond NIMBYism), about the security and weapon proliferation issues involved in putting plutonium factories all over the place, and about the lack of a solution for waste disposal, is not irrational.

Many people have irrational fears about nuclear power. Many, though, have an irrational attachment to it, some big-science romantic idea of Man Harnessing The Atom!, never mind the drawbacks.

Re:depressing... (1)

MrKaos (858439) | more than 5 years ago | (#29510709)

It is about pacification of people's irrational fears so we can actually build nuclear power plants and stop spewing mercury and radioactive ash into the air.

There is nothing irrational about not wanting to ingest radioactive isotopes because they have been bio-concentrated by the environment into the food chain. Once radioactive isotopes are *inside* the body the mutagenic properties cause cancers. If this stops excess uranium entering the environment then that is a good thing. Unfortunately there are a plethora of other radioactive isotope externalities that the entire industrial Nuclear process releases.

As radioactive isotope emission is inevitable, and there is no known way to clean it up, I'd say those sorts of fears are actually rational fears, like not getting to close to a large crocodile, once you understand the dangers. So you are better informed I've listed some of the mutagenic radioactive isotopes that the Nuclear industry releases:

Mine tailing: radioactive mine tailings from open cut mining where ever it has occurred, radon 220, radium 226, thorium etc.

Enrichment: U-238 or DU. Used as weapon projectile, is pyrophoric and burns into a radioactive powder. Groundwater contamination from leaking Hexafluoride tanks [wikipedia.org]

Reactor facility: tritium, iodine 131, xenon 141, 143, 144, cerium 141, 143, 144, and tritium. Noble gases which decay into more dangerous daughter products (Xenon 137, Krypton 90, rubidium 90, strontium 90, Xenon 135, xenon 133, krypton 85, Argon 39). Of course no epidemiological studies have been performed on the noble gas venting which are released hourly from *all* Nuclear reactors. (did I mention tritium?) 4000 gallons of primary coolant water PER DAY containing plutonium 238,239,241, technetium 99, iodine 129, carbon 14 and *ahem* tritium. That's just the authorised effluents and not the accidents.

Reactor decommissioning: cobalt 60, iron 55, nickel 63, C.R.U.D.

Radioactive Waste: Plutonium, Strontium 90, Iodine 131, Cesium 137 and on and on

If this "solution" can be used to convince people we have all of our all of our bases covered, then it is a very good thing.

So, quite clearly, all our bases are *not* covered. This is only being used to recover uranium which will be used for fuel. When the engineering is performed and the scientific evidence is produced to demonstrate out bases are covered *then* I will be convinced. Until then the reality is that the Nuclear process continues to release radioactive isotopes into the environment and that they continue to accumulate in the foodchain.

Re:depressing... (1)

jonadab (583620) | more than 5 years ago | (#29504235)

I think you're off by at least six years. Poop jokes are inherently hilarious to most twelve-year-old boys, unless I am gravely mistaken. HTH.HAND.

Re:depressing... (1)

Kasar (838340) | more than 5 years ago | (#29508833)

Cleanup in places like the Black Triangle and other places in Central and Eastern Europe would be the most obvious use for this if it can be done economically. The mining tailings and waste are only part of the problem, but anything helps when nations like Hungary are spending billions on inherited messes.

They should move on to molten-glass Thorium reactors really though, Uranium's so 1945.

Out of the frying pan, into the fire (1)

funehmon (648132) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502437)

Great, we have gone from uranium tainted water to E.Coli infected water. Take your pick!

I love science! (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502483)

I love hearing about turning aids into a cancer fighting ailment.
I love hearing about using waste from the farms to develop the ecoli, which will then recycle the nuclear waste we are accumulating.
Imagine if now, the nuclear waste did not have to go missing off the back end of ships and trucks everywhere, because we had a safe means of disposal....it would not only make the garbage management industry falter, but make us rethink our failure to adopt nuclear energy as a viable source for cities everywhere.

Good! Nuclear luddites have ever fewer excuses! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29502541)

I long for the day when the "Green" movement is forced to concede that nuclear power is the ONLY path to true energy independence and abundance. I'm not interested in your pre-industrial-revolution utopia.

Re:Good! Nuclear luddites have ever fewer excuses! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29503431)

Energy independence? Surely not if you're an American. America only has a tiny 2.5% of the world's uranium reserves. Besides, we only know of enough uranium to keep us going for another 100 years or so. And that's based on old consumption figures. If America were to move to nuclear, it would be game over in a hurry.

Re:Good! Nuclear luddites have ever fewer excuses! (1)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 5 years ago | (#29507713)

I long for the day when the "Green" movement is forced to concede that nuclear power is the ONLY path to true energy independence and abundance. I'm not interested in your pre-industrial-revolution utopia.

We had some ideas for energy independence, but unfortunately they had to be abandoned. It turns out that violations of the Second Law of Thermodynamics make atheists cry.

Hot Frongs On The Loose! (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 5 years ago | (#29502553)

Paging Fred Small, paging Fred Small, there's a song in this story trying to get out.

Glowing Excrement! (1)

WidgetGuy (1233314) | more than 5 years ago | (#29503183)

Cool. Now my stool can glow in the dark!

Obligatory Futurama reference (2, Funny)

Snarky McButtface (1542357) | more than 5 years ago | (#29503869)

How will this affect my nuclear piles?

Not the "Japanese Miracle" (1)

krou (1027572) | more than 5 years ago | (#29504211)

The reference to Ghost in the Shell is tempting, but unfortunately, the "Japanese Miracle" from GitS involved using nanomachines for radiation clean-up. Still, pretty interesting.

The article says it can clean up nuclear waste. Does this mean it can clean up sites where a nuclear explosion has taken place? (Sorry if that's a dumb question, I'm not that knowledgeable on this). If so, I am more interested in what this will mean politically: does this mean using nuclear weapons has become a much easier option? Does having a nuclear weapon now become less of a deterrent?

Re:Not the "Japanese Miracle" (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506059)

I dont know how helpful crop dusting all the victims of a nuclear explosion with Ecoli would be. I think that might constitute a further war crime.

Re:Not the "Japanese Miracle" (1)

jhfry (829244) | more than 5 years ago | (#29506573)

I never knew that nuclear blast zones were so contaminated that they were of much concern. I always thought that the hundreds of thousands killed in an instant was the deterrent, not the expensive clean up.

The cartoons? (1)

idigitallDotCom (1396193) | more than 5 years ago | (#29504573)

All jokes aside, nuclear waste "mutated" E Coli. Why am I the only one who thinks this is a bad idea?
Making life radioactive? is that really a good idea?

#fros.t pist (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29504863)

There are GNNA (GAY NIGGER Recruitment, but Fact: *BSD isB dying Of America (GNAA)

I wonder when they will find out... (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#29507963)

That everyone down that river now constantly shits his pants, instead of losing hair, and that that makes them die even quicker. :P

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