How Indians were fooled in Coir Sales (Post No.5526)

Written by London Swaminathan
Date: 10 October 2018


Time uploaded in London –14-42 (British Summer Time)


Post No. 5526


Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog.


How Indians were fooled in Thorium Sales

During the time of world war time, India was exporting coir to Germany from Kerala and Tamil Nadu. At that time it was a single province. Tamils and Malayalees who were in the export business found a fraudulent and novel way of making money. Since the money for the coir was given on the basis of its weight, they increased the weight by choking them in water and rolling them onto the sand. It naturally increased the weight of the exported materials and brought them more money.

Germans who were desperate to make advanced weapons, particularly nuclear weapons during the war time found that the sand contained Thorium, nuclear material. Then they wrote back to coir exporters saying that they were ready to buy the sand itself. Only then the locals came to know the value of the monazite sand in their area.

India has the largest deposit of Thorium in the world. Next to India stands Australia. Monazite is the mineral that contains Thorium.


In 1815, Jons Jakob Berzelius of Sweden discovered Thorium.

Thorium is fertile but not fissile. It is a silvery white metal which turns into blak thorium dioxide when It is exposed to atmosphere.

The advantages of using Thorium in the nuclear reactors are–
1.This fuel produces 70% less toxic materials than uranium and other fuels
2.No rogue state can make an atom bomb with the used materials.

India made a nuclear device with the materials from its Canada built reactor. That reactor used Uranium.
Thorium has always intrigued nuclear physicists; the question has been how best to use it. It has similar radioactive properties of uranium 238, the isotope which makes up all nuclear fuels. It is three or four times more abundant in nature than Uranium.
It is named after the Scandinavian thunder god Thor. He is similar to Indra in the Rig veda. Thursday also is named after Thor.

Like U-238, Thorium in its naturally available form, will absorb neutrons from another nuclear material such as enriched U -235, and start to break down releasing huge amounts of energy. The difference comes in the family of radioactive elements and isotopes that are created as a result. The key absence from the Thorium reaction is large quantities of man- made element plutonium, particularly Pu-239 form favoured as a weapons material.

With less quantity of Thorium we can produce more electricity. It is said that Thorium deposits can produce electricity for another 1000 years.

God has given two gifts to India— Thorium and Solar energy. With these two, INDIA can prosper without damaging environment.

25 isotopes
Thorium-232 is the main isotope that occurs naturally. It has a half- life of 14 billion years. Of the other 24 known isotopes of Thorium, the longest lived is Thorium 230 with a long life of 75 000 years.

In the early years of X Ray diagnosis, patients were injected with a colloidal suspension of Thorium oxide to highlight the blood streams in the body. It was later found that those who took such a solution suffered from higher incidence of leukaemia. In 1900s German company was using it in toothpaste. Now all these are discontinued.

Thorium oxide is used in the manufacture of refractory materials for the metallurgical industry. Thermionic emitting devices and photo electric cells that measure the wave length of ultra violet light, both contain Thorium. It is used in high quality camera lenses too.

Thorium based nuclear reactors are functioning at experimental level. Once they become commercial it will be good for the world.

Chemical properties

Symbol Th
Atomic number 90
Melting point 1750 degrees C
Boiling point about 4800 degrees C
Atomic weight 232.0381


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