The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

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Search results for "atomic" ...

  • America’s atomic vets: ‘We were used as guinea pigs – every one of us’

    Atomic veterans feel abused, neglected and forgotten by the government and a country that exposed them to unforeseen risks. In the decades since the nuclear tests, many have suffered ailments such as cancer and blame the radiation.
  • Atomic, MS: 50 Years Later

    A half-hour student produced documentary on the 50th anniversary of the atomic testing in southern Mississippi. Produced as a collaborative project of the television documentary and advanced reporting classes at the University of Mississippi.
  • Waste Lands

    Today, they have long been converted into parks, office buildings and even hiking trails. But in a remarkable investigation, two of our most intrepid reporters discovered that in these places once stood factories and research centers that the government pressed into service to produce nuclear weapons. A yearlong effort resulted in revelations about what happened to the atomic waste from these facilities and a first-of-its-kind online historical database on more than 500 sites. The government, primarily the Energy Department, has for years assured the public the waste is being cleaned up efficiently and with no harm to anyone. It plans to have spent an estimated $350 billion before the work is done. But despite all this funding, as reporters John Emshwiller and Jeremy Singer-Vine discovered, the government hasn’t been able to find even the exact address of some of these facilities. Records on other sites are so spotty no real determination can be made on the next step. And 20 of the sites that were initially declared safe have required a second, and sometimes third, cleanup over the years. Thanks to an effort that married 21st-century Internet analysis with old-fashioned reporting, online readers can now enter their ZIP Code to get a full history of any site near them. The detail of this database—including hundreds of documents, corporate photos of factories and interviews with current property owners, most of whom had no idea of their property’s Cold War legacy—makes for helpful and at times alarming reading. Not surprisingly, almost a half a million online hits were recorded in the first weeks after our project, called Waste Lands, was published.
  • Yellow Dirt

    The radioactive "yellow dirt" -- a world class deposit of uranium under the Navajo reservation in the American Southwest -- lay beneath an earthen shield until the U.S. government cam calling, desperate to make atomic bombs. The book reveals ow the government looked away as miners, and then the neighbors were exposed to uranium's dangers.
  • Yellow Dirt: An American Story of a Poisoned Land and a People Betrayed

    This book reveals how the U.S. government consciously looked away as miners, and then the neighbors, were exposed to uranium's dangers as it was mined on a Navajo reservation, in a slow-motion environmental catastrophe that last for decades and continues today.
  • Assault on Pelindaba

    "Assault on Pelindaba is a story about global nuclear weapons proliferation and the very real threat of nuclear terrorism post 9/11. Experts agree that acquiring plutonium or highly enriched uranium, the material to actually make a nuclear weapon, is not easy."
  • What the atomic age left behind

    This series described a 10.5-million-ton pile of nuclear waste polluting the Colorado River. The waste was left over from decades of milling uranium ore, first for atomic weapons and later for nuclear fuel. For decades, the pile of toxic and radioactive waste leaked into the river, which provides the drinking water for more than 20 million people in three western states. It was the largest of the dozens of piles of tailings and the only one that hadn't been moved away from major rivers in the United States. And for a while, it appeared it would stay put, contaminating the river for centuries.
  • News zero: The New York Times and the bomb

    This book documents how The New York Times shaped public opinions that helped the U.S. government develop atomic weaponry. The book reveals how The Times' science writer also was on the payroll of the U.S. Army, how The Times obscured the impact of radiation, and how the enormity of U.S. nuclear weapons tests in the Pacific has been shrouded in secrecy for decades despite an amount of testing from 1946 to 1962 that equates to the detonation of about 8,580 Hiroshima-sized bombs.
  • We Did Nothng Wrong: Why Software Quality Matters

    "Software programs are killing people." At the National Cancer Institute in Panama City, five cancer patients died after an overdose of radiation during their treatments. The U.S.-made software that calculated the dosages of these treatments doubled the dosages during treatment of 27 patients. The International Atomic Energy Agency's investigation of the five deaths blamed radiation poisoning, and said that the remaining patients would be at risk for developing "serious complications" from the radiation. Two of the Panamanian technicians were convicted of second-degree murder and are serving four-year sentences in a Panama prison. And the makers of the software, Multidata Systems International in St. Louis, Missouri, deny any wrongdoing.
  • Nuclear Power May Rise Again: Optimism permeates the once-moribund industry that generates electricity from reactors. As atomic power grows more efficient and fossil fuels more costly, there is even talk of building more plants.

    According to the article, "Against all expectations, the power people said, the nuclear industry in the United States is in the midst of a renaissance. It has been rescued from the brink of extinction and made into a desirable business, so prosperous, in fact, that there has developed a vigorous market for used nuclear power plants. The price of these plants has increased a hundredfold in just three years."