Is There More to This Story: Radiation ‘Sniffer’ Helicopter Takes Flight Above Washington

DC… Starting Monday, a helicopter registered to the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (DOE/NNSA), equipped with specialized sensors, will measure and map radiation levels across downtown Washington, D.C. and the surrounding metro area, read a government press release.  NNSA’s Nuclear Emergency Support Team (NEST) aircraft, a Bell 412 utility helicopter outfitted “with sensitive, state-of-the-art passive radiation sensing technology” will fly across the region at “150 feet (or higher) above the ground at a speed of approximately 80 mph” to conduct “aerial surveys” of radiation levels as part of security efforts ahead of the presidential inauguration on Jan. 20.  The low-flying flights across the District will continue through Nov. 6, at a rate of about two per day. The agency wants to survey and update its radiation maps in the event of a nuclear or radiological incident.  #N412DE is a B412…

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