Swede Attempts to Build Homemade Nuclear Reactor

Posted August 8th, 2011 at 1:15 am (UTC-5)
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A Swedish man was arrested after trying to split atoms in his kitchen. Richard Handl said he was splitting atoms as a hobby.

Handl had the radioactive elements radium, americium and uranium in his apartment in south Sweden when he was taken into police custody in late July.

Handl told various media outlets he wanted to see if he could set up a nuclear reactor in his home. After starting the project he sent a note to Swedish authorities asking if the experiment was legal. Sweden's Radiation Authority responded by sending police to arrest him.

Officials determined Handl's apartment and neighbors were safe. However, Handl has been forbidden from handling radioactive materials.

If convicted of violating radiation safety laws, Richard Handl could face fines or up to two years in prison.