Note: I'm not posting this due to any ongoing world events, just thought you guys might find it useful.
I know they are designed to protect you against a single radioactive isotope that targets the thyroid, and I'm pretty sure that isotope comes from nuclear reactors, not nuclear weapons. But @Friendly Engineer would probably be the best authority on that and I'd defer to him in case I have incorrect information.Good idea. Anyone have any expertise on the subject?
The way to think about it is that a nuclear warhead is like a nuclear reactor, just everything happens much, much quicker. Loads of neutrons are given off, almost instantly, causing a crap ton of atoms to fission very quickly.I know they are designed to protect you against a single radioactive isotope that targets the thyroid, and I'm pretty sure that isotope comes from nuclear reactors, not nuclear weapons. But @Friendly Engineer would probably be the best authority on that and I'd defer to him in case I have incorrect information.
Internal Dose Due To Inhalation And The Food ChainOne serious problem following a large-scale nuclear exchange is radioactive contamination of drinking water. Those cities that are damaged would undoubtedly lose their water system due to power loss and ruptured supply pipes. Suburban residents within the local fallout pattern would encounter heavily contaminated water supplies and would have to rely on stored water. Surface water supplies would be directly contaminated by fission products.
During the first few months in areas extending several hundred kilometers downwind of an explosion, the dust, smoke, and radioactivity could cause severe water pollution in surface waters. The dominant fission product during this time would be 131I (iodine-131). Beyond a few months, the dominant fission product in solution would be 90Sr (strontium-90) (Naidu, 1984). Many of the fission products would remain fixed in fallout dust, river and lake sediments, and soils. In rural areas, intermediate- and long-term fallout would pollute water supplies to a lesser extent than the city and suburban supplies. In the absence of additional contamination from runoff, lakes, reservoirs, and rivers would gradually become less contaminated as water flowed through the system.
Initially groundwater supplies would remain unpolluted but they may be difficult to tap. Eventually, however, some groundwater could become contaminated, and remain so for some tens of years after a nuclear war. It would take hundreds or thousands of years for an aquifer to become pure (or nearly so) (van der Heijde, 1985). Doses from drinking this water would be small but, nonetheless, possibly above current water quality standards. In the long term, 90Sr and 137Cs (cesium-137) would be the major radionuclides affecting fresh water supplies.
The GLODEP2 fractional deposition rates have been used to calculate 90Sr surface concentrations. The results are given in Table 7 for the Northern Hemisphere winter and summer seasons. The values are based on the Knox (1983) 5,300-Mt baseline scenario A, and are expressed in mCi/ km2 for a 6-year period over 20° latitude bands. The maximum deposition occurs between 30 and 70°N. The concurrent deposition values for 137Cs can be obtained by multiplying the 90Sr values by 1.6. These values assume an unperturbed atmosphere. As stated earlier, introducing smoke and soot into the troposphere and stratosphere would probably slightly reduce Northern Hemisphere values and slightly increase 90Sr deposition in the Southern Hemisphere.
Also I recommend giving that source a read guys.The way to think about it is that a nuclear warhead is like a nuclear reactor, just everything happens much, much quicker. Loads of neutrons are given off, almost instantly, causing a crap ton of atoms to fission very quickly.
This means, you'll get loads of different fission products from a bomb which are similar in nature to those in a nuclear reactor.
So, to answer your question, Iodine-131 is produced by both reactors & weapons.