Approximate Prompt and Delayed Fallout Effects from a 10 kT Detonation - Illustration
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radioactive fallout

Source of graphic: Key Response Planning Factors for the Aftermath of Nuclear Terrorism (PDF - 4.52 MB)
(Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, August 2009, Page 3, Figure 2); Note: document contains other plume illustrations as well.
  • Graphic display shows hypothetical, computer-modeled zones of damage, injury, and radiation levels after 10kT ground burst of an improvised nuclear device
    • Linear scale of miles on both the x and y-axis
    • Zones are approximate and would likely change over time during an event
  • Irregular darker blue areas on the right half of the diagram reflect areas of potential radioactive fallout
    • Note that weather and wind affect where fallout goes over time
      • Upper winds carry fallout in one direction.
      • Winds nearer to the earth's surface carry fallout in another direction
      • This difference is frequently seen, even with normal weather patterns
      • Both upper and lower winds can change direction normally, and during an event