RADIATION: All You Need to Know to Stop Worrying . . . Or to Start by

RADIATION: All You Need to Know to Stop Worrying . . . Or to Start

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A generally vague, poorly organized, lackluster radiation round-up. The book opens with a very weak explanation of atomic structure and decay, particle physics, and electromagnetic waves: fuzzy, often ambiguous or misleading, with occasional bits of sheer nonsense (""Right now, the cosmos contains all the naturally occurring radioactive material there is or ever will be""). Next the authors amble, to no clear purpose, through a discussion of natural and artificial sources of radiation, the nuclear industry, and the harmful and potentially harmful effects of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation--plus, on the positive side, the uses of radiation and radioactive materials in medical diagnosis and treatment, nuclear power, and national defense. There's a section on reducing the risks of exposure to radiation by avoiding unnecessary x-rays, excessive suntanning, and leaky microwave ovens; and, at the close, a list of the various governmental regulatory agencies and their areas of responsibility. The text, then, even though supplemented with a number of fairly meaningless tables, is less comprehensive than Panati and Hudson's splendidly lucid The Silent Intruder (p. 274), which is highly recommended; this volume is not.

Pub Date: May 29th, 1981
Publisher: Random House