A mountain in North Korea believed to have acted as the website of five of the rascal regime’s nuclear tests — including Sunday’s expected hydrogen bomb blowup — is at risk of collapse and leaking radiation into the region, a Chinese scientist said Monday.
Researchers at the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, Anhui province, examined the Punggye-ri site and said they “were confident” underground detonations were arising underneath the mountain, South China Morning Post reported. Wang Naiyan, a former chairman of the China Nuclear Society and a researcher on China’s own nuclear weapons program, said another measure underneath the mountain can cause an “environmental disaster” if the area caves in on itself, granting radiation to flee and “drift across the region, ” including into China.
“We call it’ taking the roof off.’ If the mountain crumbles and the hole is disclosed, it will let out numerous bad things.” Wang told the South China Morning Post.
Wang said there are limited elevations in North Korea that are “suitable” to conduct a nuclear exam and vertical passages could increase the likelihood of the “top” of the mountain being blown off. Nonetheless, horizontal passageways are easier to build- but more likely to cause the mountain to implode with a bigger blast.
North Korea claimed it explosion a hydrogen bomb over the weekend, announcing the test a “perfect success.” The exam provoked an artificial amount 6.3 earthquake, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. A second shudder was identified minutes after the first, described as a cave-in or crumble by USGS and China’s earthquake administration.
The test was estimated to have a yield of 100 kilotons, meaning a explosion that was four to five times more powerful than the explosion in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1945, a South Korean defense official told the country’s Yonhap News Agency . The precise concentration of the underground nuclear detonation has yet to be determined and experts are still working to confirm the nuclear device was in fact a hydrogen bomb.
Despite Wang’s alarming about radioactivity, speaks deported after the test on Sunday demo no change in the air sample near China’s border with North Korea, the South China Morning Post reported.
The regime’s nuclear and missile program has performed immense paces since Kim Jong Un took power in 2011 after his father’s demise. It imparted its first intercontinental intercontinental ballistic missile test in July following a series of missile starts earlier this year.
North Korea is thought to have a germinating arsenal of nuclear bombs and has expended decades trying to perfect a multistage, long-range rocket to eventually carry smaller different versions of those bombs.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.