Aletho News


On “Nuclear Iran” Allegations: Nanodiamonds Ain’t Nuclear Bombs

Moon of Alabama | November 7, 2011

The Washington Posts alleges that the IAEA says foreign expertise has brought Iran to threshold of nuclear capability. This is of course a lie. The IAEA says nothing like that. This is simply an assertion made by the reporter and some “nuclear Iran” scare propagandists.

And what would “to threshold of nuclear capability” actually mean? That Iran would be capable, like Japan, Brazil, the Netherlands or some 40 other countries, to build a nuclear bomb if it would choose to do so? What would be new, wrong or dangerous with that?

The piece goes into some details, provided mostly by chief nuclear scare monger David Albright, about allegedly “new” stuff some secret services handed to the IAEA. To see how misleading these allegations are lets look at just one detail. A Ukrainian expert for creating nanodiamands is described as “weapon scientist” and “nuclear scientist” even when all his published work is about the synthesizing of very small diamonds:

Documents and other records provide new details on the role played by a former Soviet weapons scientist who allegedly tutored Iranians over several years on building high-precision detonators of the kind used to trigger a nuclear chain reaction, the officials and experts said.

According to the intelligence provided to the IAEA, key assistance in both areas was provided by Vyacheslav Danilenko, a former Soviet nuclear scientist who was contracted in the mid-1990s by Iran’s Physics Research Center, a facility linked to the country’s nuclear program. Documents provided to the U.N. officials showed that Danilenko offered assistance to the Iranians over at least five years, giving lectures and sharing research papers on developing and testing an explosives package that the Iranians apparently incorporated into their warhead design, according to two officials with access to the IAEA’s confidential files.

Dr. Vyacheslav Danilenko is a well known Ukrainian (“former Soviet”) scientist. But his specialties are not “weapon” or “nuclear” science, indeed there seems to be nothing to support that claim, but the production of nanodiamonds via detonations (ppt). According to the history of detonation nanodiamonds he describes in chapter 10 of Ultrananocrystalline Diamond – Synthesis, Properties, and Applications (pdf) he has worked in that field since 1962, invented new methods used in the process and is related with Alit, an Ukrainian company that produces nanodiamonds.

This is a detonation tank to create nanodiamonds, not a nuclear device.

Very small diamonds are useful for many purposes, like polishing optics or PC hard disks. That is why, for example, Drexel University in Philadelphia invited Danilenko for a talk at its Nanotechnology Institute:

On January 29, the AJ Drexel Nanotechnology Institute sponsored a Nanodiamond Lecture, “Nanodiamonds: Reactor Design and Synthesis,” by noted Ukrainian scientist Dr. Vyacheslav Danilenko. Dr. Danilenko was among the first to demonstrate detonation synthesis of diamonds and has more than 30 years experience in the design of reactors for the synthesis of nanodiamonds.

Some years ago Iran launched a big Nano Technology Initiative which includes Iranian research on detonation nanodiamonds (pdf). Iran is planing to produce them on industrial scale. It holds regular international conferences and invites experts on nanotechnology from all over the world. It is quite likely that famous international scientists in that field, like Dr. Danilenko, have been invited, gave talks in Iran and cooperate with its scientists.

Producing nanodiamonds via detonations uses large confined containers with water cooling, for which Danilenko seems to have a patent. The Ukrainian company he works with, Alit, shows such a detonation chamber on its webpage as does the picture above. The detonation nanodiamond explanation thereby also fits with another allegation from the IAEA report:

The Associated Press reported that U.N. officials have acquired satellite photos of a bus-size steel container used by Iran for some of the explosives testing.

See the picture above and the one on the Alit web page. Iran having a “bus-size steel container” for explosive testing and research cooperation with Danilenko both fit very well with Iran’s plans for nanodiamond production. They do not fit well with anything nuclear.

In his power-point presentation on detonation nanodiamonds on a bigger scale Danilenko recommends:

Use for industrial production of DND:
• charges ≥ 20 kg, explosion under water in close pool (in heavy metal cover), laser initiation;

• utilization of old ammunition under water in close pool;

Use of old ammunition in a closed water pool? Does that sound sound like something that “the Iranians apparently incorporated into their warhead design” as WaPo alleges? On what facts is that “apparently” innuendo based on?

But how or why should the production of detonation nanodiamonds relate to nuclear bombs at all? Why would someone even think they are related?

It may be because both use precise detonations. But they do so on a very different scales and in very different conditions. A sphere explosion for a nuclear device doesn’t use a confined container and water cooling. But a lot of other physics fields, for example seismological research, also use precise detonations. There is nothing especially “nuclear” about them.

Just because a certain method like precise detonations is used in Iran, does not imply that it is used for what Mr. Albright and some “western agencies” claim. Nanodiamonds ain’t nuclear weapons.

Danilenko’s lifelong expertise is with nanodiamonds, not with nuclear weapons. It is much more plausible, and fitting the evidence, that Iran is working with him in his original capacity than in a field outside his main expertise.

If this is the general quality of the “new evidence” on Iran then it is quite worthless. This seems to be just more innuendo and dirt thrown towards Iran with the hope that something, anything might stick.

Update – November 8, 2011

November 7, 2011 - Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering


  1. There should be a punishable law–a death penalty for reporters that mis-lead and lie like a rug.USA/NATO county’s media are infested with a Israel Firster’s cult–sub-humans.Like viruses–very dangerous

    Comment by George A | November 8, 2011 | Reply

  2. These people have form when it comes to 2+2=4^10. Take the recently disclosed “uranium processing facility” in Syria, the IAEA managed to describe yarn-spinners at a cloth factory as being suspected uranium centrifuges. These people are called “experts” and “scientists” by the lying mass media, recognize them for what they are – pro-war propaganda agents.

    Comment by Name Required | November 8, 2011 | Reply

  3. David Kelly was a UN weapons expert and inspector, his murder is a warning to anyone employed by the UN in a similar capacity that to veer of script and tell the truth is an act punishable by death.

    I’m hardly surprised that the “UN weapons experts” are keeping quiet and only promote patently disprovable theories, it’s like they’re saying “if we’ve got to say this nonsense, let’s make it believable enough for ‘politicians’ and ‘journalists’ but ridiculous enough for informed people so that they will be able to work it out in about 2 seconds”.

    Comment by Comment by | November 8, 2011 | Reply

  4. [...] On “Nuclear Iran” Allegations: Nanodiamonds Ain’t Nuclear Bombs [...]

    Pingback by Latest News | The Aussie Digger : Home of all Australian Veterans ex Service and Serving members | November 8, 2011 | Reply

  5. Iran invasion is a done deal, so let’s take a look at some other fun facts.

    I have a strong impression that those hot heads at the Pentagon have finally reached an agreement on what the invasion will look like. A much simpler, leaner, and meaner plan has been chosen – a classical pincer movement (from south-east Iraq and Afghanistan/Pakistan) in an attempt to pinch the southern Iran and cut off the coast. Turkey is out of the picture for now, but only until the second phase (the assault on Tehran)… which, by the way, may never come.

    In other words, no change to the main goal (destruction of Iran’s coastal defenses), which means no change to the overall defensive strategy either.

    In the light of all of this this, let’s get down to some (reality-checking) numbers.

    Officially, there were some 150,000 U.S. troops in Iraq in October this year. Also officially, there are only 40,000 of them left there now. Now, where did those 110,000 men and women go? They didn’t simply vanish into thin air. And they, sure as hell, didn’t go back to the U.S either. Hiding somewhere in the desert, perhaps? My guess is that no more than 20,000 left for east Turkey, while the rest of them are still somewhere in south-east Iraq, unofficially of course, waiting for the marching orders.

    But that’s only one side of the story. On the other side, there are (officially) some 100,000 U.S. troops right now in Afghanistan. But if we take into account the (silent and completely unheard of) recent increase in the overall U.S. presence in the region, I’d go on and guess that the U.S. now commands some 250,000 ground troops in the countries bordering Iran. That’s some 100,000 more than in Iraq invasion, and still not nearly enough for a successful invasion of Iran, but overconfidence can always compensate for the numbers, right?

    And this is where the fun in ‘fun facts’ starts.

    How many of those 250,000 have to be wiped out in order to turn the U.S. into a military dictatorship? An open military dictatorship, to be precise. It’s not like the U.S. isn’t military dictatorship right now, it’s just that no one admits it. What you don’t see can’t hurt you, right?

    So, how many?

    20% casualty rate in an operation like invasion of Iran should be expected as a reasonable number of losses. That would make 50,000. Nope, not enough. We have to go (way, way) beyond reasonable here. Something between 40% and 60% I’d guess. Let’s round it up to 50%.

    So, 125,000 of the U.S. troops will have to wiped out in order for the Pentagon to achieve its goal – an U.S. dictatorship. But how does one kill 125,000 of one’s own troops without anyone taking a notice? That’s not easy, you know. Some of them will certainly be killed by Iranians, but simply not enough.

    The answer, of course, lies in strategic nuclear weapons. Since the U.S. is going to use nuclear weapons on Iranian soil anyway, why not drop some of them (by ‘mistake’) on some friendly units in ‘friendly fire incidents’? Nuclear weapons are so imprecise. A couple of miles here or there, and instead of wiping out opponent’s units, one can easily end up wiping out one’s own. What an absolutely perfect excuse! Combined with the U.N. report that Iran already has nuclear weapons, an ideal combination of ‘Iranian nuclear bombs’ and ‘friendly fire incidents’ can be reached.

    But wait, that’s not all! The other 125,000 troops will suddenly find themselves completely surrounded and with no idea what to do next! Whether to move back or forth, or even run the hell out of the place as fast as they can. Caught in a crossfire between Iranian forces and U.S. strategic (nuclear) forces, they’ll be more helpless than a headless fly. In essence, the whole force, 250,000 men strong, will be lost. But that’s still not all. The losses should also include several thousand hardware pieces (tanks, artillery, that kind of stuff), 2-3 airplane carriers, countless numbers of support ships, half a dozen of submarines, and all the rest of the U.S. forces hopelessly stuck hundreds of thousands of miles away from the U.S. mainland.

    Feeling that fun factor going through the roof yet? Well, don’t let me hold you back. There’s more yet to come.

    How many (professional) soldiers, all in all, does the U.S. military command, anyway? I have no idea, but let’s round it up to 1 million people (correction: just checked on wiki, and it was 1,430,895 exactly in September 2010). 250,000 out of 1-1,5 million makes a casualty rate of 20-25% *before* the WW III has even begun!

    You people do realize that once the U.S. is turned into an open military dictatorship, everyone on the planet can kiss their large cities goodbye? Russia and China specifically. A military dictatorship has no concerns over political matters. First nuclear strike (preferably without retaliation, but that’s also acceptable) is the the only thing that will matter. After all, the “people” who control the U.S. have no concerns over such trivial matters like nuclear retaliation. They thing big. Chessboard BIG!

    Anyway, the only possible choice for countries like Russia and China (which will have no people to speak of after the U.S. nuclear strike) is to invade the U.S. before the strike happens. And anyone who can’t take advantage of the opponent’s 20-25% loss rate before the first shot has even been fired doesn’t deserve to be called a soldier.

    Never mind that the U.S. invasion by China has always been the goal of the said “people” who control the U.S. The situation will simply leave no other choice but to invade. It will be a clear forced move, but only because everyone was too chickenshit scared to make a right move long before they were forced to make a wrong one. These are the simple rules of this real-life ‘chess’.

    Comment by checkmate in 3 moves | November 9, 2011 | Reply

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