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4.26.2007

What Happens When You Get Hit In The Head By The Beam Of A Particle Accelerator?

Anatoli Bugorski (Russian : Анатолий Бугорский) (born 1942) is a Russian scientist who was involved in an accident with a particle accelerator in 1978. To this day, he has not gained any super powers.

In 1978, as a researcher at the Institute for High Energy Physics in Protvino, Bugorski was checking a malfunctioning piece of linear accelerator equipment, when an accident occurred due to failed safety mechanisms. Bugorski was leaning over the piece of equipment, when he stuck his head in the part through which the proton beam was running. Reportedly, he saw a flash "brighter than a thousand suns", but did not feel any pain. The beam measured about 200,000 rads when it entered Bugorski's skull. When the beam exited, after colliding with the inside of his head, it measured about 300,000 rads.

The left half of Bugorski's face swelled up beyond recognition, and over the next several days started peeling off, showing the path that the proton beam (moving near the speed of light) had burned through parts of his face, his bone, and the brain tissue underneath. As it was believed that about 500 to 600 rads is enough to kill a person, Bugorski was taken to a clinic in Moscow where the doctors could observe his death over the following weeks. However, Bugorski has survived to this day; he is able to function perfectly well, save the fact that he has occasional petit mal seizures and very occasional grand mal seizures. The left half of his face was frozen, due to the destruction of nerves, and does not age.

Because of the Soviet Union's policy of maintaining secrecy on Nuclear power-related issues, Bugorski did not speak about the accident for over a decade. He would go to the Moscow radiation clinic twice a year, for examination, and to commune with other nuclear-accident victims. For years, he remained a poster boy for Soviet and Russian radiation medicine. In 1996, he applied for disabled status, to receive his free epilepsy medication. Bugorski showed interest in making himself available for study to Western researchers, but didn't have enough money to go to the Western countries.

1 Comments:

At 8:26 PM, Blogger Andrew said...

Sweet! The eternal fountain of youth!

 

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