Scientists have discovered a radiation leak on the wreckage of a Russian nuclear submarine that sank in arctic waters in 1989.
Komsomolet's Soviet-era submarine sank off the Norwegian Bear Island after a fire on board that led to the loss of the life of 42 of the 69 crew members aboard. The nuclear reactor of the submarine and two nuclear warheads rest at a depth of 5.577 feet and are still on board.
Scientists have recently registered the 100,000-fold radiation of the Norwegian Sea at the wreck site.
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"Several samples taken in and around a ventilation duct on the wreck of the submarine contained far more radioactive cesium than you would normally find in the Norwegian Sea," the Norwegian Marine Research Institute said in a statement ,
The institute indicated that the results were about 100 becquerel (Bq) per liter, as opposed to about 0.001 Bq per liter elsewhere in the Norwegian Sea.
According to the researchers, the highest value measured in a sample at the wreck site was 800,000 times higher than normal.
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Scientists found that other samples from the same channel did not contain elevated levels of radiation.
"We sampled water from this particular channel because the Russians documented leaks in both the 1990s and more recently in 2007," expedition leader Hilde Elise Heldal said in a statement. "So we were not surprised to find high values here."
Heldal said that the radiation levels are not dangerously high and cited the permitted limit for radioactive cesium in food. "After the Chernobyl accident in 1986, the Norwegian authorities set this limit at 600 Bq / kg," she said. "The values we found were well above what is common in the oceans, but they were not alarmingly high."
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"What we have found is that our survey has very little impact on Norwegian seafood. In general, the cesium level in the Norwegian Sea is very low, and since the wreckage is so deep, Komsomolets pollution is rapidly diluted, "Heldal said.
"In recent days we have also sampled a few meters above the canal. Unlike the canal itself, we found no measurable concentrations of radioactive cesium there, "added Justin Gwynn, a researcher with the Norwegian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (DSA), in the statement.
The joint Norwegian-Russian expedition On Saturday in Tromso, Northern Norway, we set out to investigate the wreckage. The Norwegian research ship GO Sars arrived at the submarine's site on Sunday and sent AEgir 6000, an underwater drone, to analyze the ship and make scary shots of the wreckage.
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The video shows the ghostly wreckage of the submarine hull, its command tower, a propeller and a torpedo ,
Russia suffered a series of disasters under water.
Last week, 14 Russian sailors died in a fire on a Russian marine dive boat in the Barents Sea. Officials withheld details of the tragedy and referred to the utmost secrecy of the ship's mission. The Russian Defense Ministry said sailors had been killed by toxic fumes. Some others survived the fire, but the military did not say how many.
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Russia's Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said the submarine was on a research mission to measure the sea depth in the Barents Sea.
Officials did not name the nuclear-powered ship, but Russian media reported it was the most secret dive boat in Russia, the Losharik.
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In 2000, the submarine Kursk sank during the naval maneuvers in the Barents Sea, killing all 118 sailors on board the heaviest submarine disaster in Russia.
Fox News' Paulina Dedaj and The Associated Press contributed to this article. Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers