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Old 01-21-2003, 02:36 AM
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 114
Price of Plutonium?


As someone who watches world events I wonder,

What is the price of an ounce of plutonium? Is an ounce of plutonium more valuable than an ounce of cocaine?

Where does plutonium come from to build nuclear weapons? I believe that it is enriched uranium. So the process from uranium to plutonium most be very costly. O.K. I have this plutonium to sell, how would I sell it? I don't think ebay would touch it. Is it like a drug deal where someone knows someone else to market the product? I am sure that if I had plutonium, countries would run to me like feens in a crack deal.

So, after processing, paying off my employees and paying tax, how much can I get for my destructive glowing product?

Old 01-21-2003, 03:07 AM
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: A better place to be
Posts: 26,718
I have no idea what the street value of plutonium is -- I suspect offering it for sale would net you...

Oh, about 25 to life in Leavenworth.

However, some of the other questions can be answered. Plutonium has two principal uses: fission bombs and nuclear power. While a very slight trace of it occurs in nature (caused by natural enrichment in uranium ores), it is produced in "breeder reactors" by irradiating Uranium-238 with neutrons to form Uranium-239, which then undergoes two rapid beta reactions to become Plutonium-239. It is, of course, a completely separate element from Uranium. Construction of a safe and secure breeder reactor is costly, but the production of Pu-239 from U-238 is almost free, being a byproduct of generating power in such a reactor.

I would assume that any trading in Pu is conducted between nations, and perhaps by specialized black market people. AFAIK, it is illegal for private citizens to own it under the various acts regulating fissionable materials and nuclear technology.

Is that any help to your nefarious scheme?
Old 01-21-2003, 03:21 AM
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: 23 male, Boston
Posts: 5,791
Originally posted by Polycarp
Plutonium has two principal uses: fission bombs and nuclear power.
You left out powering the flux capacitor.
Old 01-21-2003, 08:54 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Posts: 26,680
Yea but the Plutonium for a flux capcitor you can pick up at Radio Shack!!
Old 01-21-2003, 09:55 AM
yme yme is offline
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago
Posts: 329
Slow down Marty.
Old 01-21-2003, 10:05 AM
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Posts: 18,903
I think you'd find trading in Plutonium an extremely hazardous line of work.

1) Plutonium is among the most toxic substances known to man...handle with care.

2) Western governments will go to extreme lengths to stop you. Think it is bad having the IRS on your ass? Try on the NSA, FBI and maybe CIA not to mention Interpol. Good luck...

3) Governments that can produce the stuff themselves don't need to buy it from you. The people who would buy it from you are pretty unsavory characters and as likely to kill you as not to get their hands on the Plutonium.

All-in-all I'd say there are far safer lines of work to take up. You may get a few million dollars for a few pounds of Plutonium but in this case even trafficing in cocaine is likely to be a safer profession.
Old 01-23-2003, 01:52 AM
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Way down in Deep 13
Posts: 2,928
Maybe in 1985, Plutonium is available in every corner drug store, but in 1955, it's a little hard to come by!

Plutonium is also dangerous as fark. Just ask Mason on 24.
Old 01-23-2003, 03:19 AM
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: The Brink
Posts: 11,311
Well, according to the National Office of National Drug Control Policy, in the year 2000, Cocaine cost about $211.70 per gram (retail). I tried converting that into ounces, but my calculator kept giving me funny numbers, so you're on your own at that point. Heroin cost $2,087.86 per gram in 2000, btw. Incidentally, the current price of gold is about $360 per ounce, if my sources are to be beleived.

("The more you know!")
Old 01-23-2003, 06:04 PM
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: The Brink
Posts: 11,311
Well, I sure kilt' this thread up good, didn't I?
Old 01-23-2003, 07:13 PM
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: NY USA
Posts: 7,635
Being that there (hopefully) isn't an established black market that regularly buys & sells plutonium its impossible to give a 'street' price.

However, because of how difficult & expensive it is to make and what you can do with it a couple kilos of Pu would be worth tens of millions to the right people.

See here for more info.
Old 01-23-2003, 07:32 PM
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 81
In my part of the country, coke goes for $700-$1200/oz. After searching with google, I'm a bit confused by the price of plutonium. I thout Poly was nuts to say that it is almost free.
From 1946 to 1970, the federal government paid nine dollars a gram for plutonium produced in civilian reactors. (McPhee, 1973)
And I saw a french document that put the value at zero. I stopped reading after that. Poly's right. Learn something new everyday.
Old 01-23-2003, 07:59 PM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Somewhere
Posts: 1,557

According to that link:

The fuel value of plutonium is determined by the price of uranium. Assuming a price of $40 per kilogram of natural uranium, uranium-235 is worth about $5,600 per kilogram. Since the energy per fission from plutonium-239 and uranium-235 is about the same, the theoretical fuel value of fissile plutonium can be put at $5,600 per kilogram. Reactor-grade plutonium also contains non-fissile isotopes, reducing its value to about $4,400 per kilogram.
Old 01-24-2003, 11:02 AM
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Dubai, UAE
Posts: 3,634
What a fascinating and amusing thread!

You can trade in platinum as well as silver and gold, and also "palladium" and "rhodium" (what are they both for?)

I got this result on a Yahoo! search:
Commodity Profit Tables - ... By Commodity. Commodity, Low Base Price (c), Low Buy Price (c), High Sell Price (c), Mass (kg), Profit Per Unit (c ... Plutonium, 30000, 30300, 31700, 19840, 1400, 5, 71. ...
but sadly the link was just a blank table.

This site - - does list the commodity price of plutonium, but as it also lists "slaves" "holographics" and "robot servants", I would imagine it's probably a game
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