Europe

Swede admits home-made atom experiment was 'crazy'

  • 4 August 2011
  • From the section Europe
A photo of Richard Handl's kitchen where he was conducting his experiment
Mr Handl posted photos of his home experiment on the internet

A Swedish man who tried to set up a nuclear reactor in his kitchen at home has admitted his plan was "crazy".

Richard Handl said he had just been "curious" and wanted to see if he would be able to split an atom.

Police were called to his flat in Angelholm in southern Sweden after he got in touch with Sweden's radiation authority to check if what he was doing was legal.

Mr Handl said he would stick to reading books about physics from now on.

Mr Handl, who is 31 and unemployed, told the BBC World Service he had bought the radioactive materials on the internet and from Germany.

He had been working on the experiment for around six months and posted regular updates on his blog.

He was questioned by police, who confiscated his nuclear materials as well as his computer.

"I had it under control, it was not so dangerous," he told the BBC.

But he added: "It was pretty stupid."

It is unclear what will happen next in the police inquiry. Mr Handl said he expected a fine.

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