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Personal and Family Protection During Nuclear War:

An Introduction to Radiation Science and Its Lifesaving Application


Compiled and Taught by Paul Zimmerman

Presented by World Life Institute’s Global Nuclear Awareness Program

Titles of 15 Lectures

  1. The Atom

  2. Radioactivity

  3. The Electromagnetic Spectrum and Gamma Photons

  4. The Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation/ Part One

  5. The Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation/ Part Two

  6. Principles of Radiation Safety

  7. Radiation Detection and Measurement

  8. Radiation Detection Equipment

  9. Fallout Shelters: Do’s and Don’ts/ Part One

  10. Fallout Shelters: Do’s and Don’ts/ Part Two

  11. The Hazards of Internal Contamination

  12. Decontamination Practices

  13. The Medical Effects of Ionizing Radiation and Acute Radiation Syndrome

  14. Farmers and Fallout

  15. Foraging for food in the Enhanced Radiation Environment



In the event of nuclear war, the life-sustaining natural environment we take for granted will be transformed into a toxic, life-threatening landscape. From all the ground zeroes suffering nuclear destruction, massive amounts of radioactive material will be lofted into the atmosphere, carried by the winds, and unevenly deposited all over the earth. If there is any hope for surviving this fallout, it is imperative that people acquire a basic, nontechnical understanding of nuclear radiation and its biological effects and make preparation, in advance, to mitigate the threat. The curriculum of this course is designed to provide the student with the information necessary to safely navigate through the enhanced radiation environment and significantly reduce the chance of illness and death.


New Content

The information provided in Personal and Family Protection During Nuclear War is designed to be accessible to all audiences.

The nonscientist will be walked through the early technical lectures with simple, engaging graphic explanations to ensure ease of comprehension. Those with some knowledge of radiation science will appreciate the practical application of this knowledge for survival purposes in the event of nuclear war.

  • Lecture #1 is an introduction to the atom and basic nomenclature needed for the remainder of the course.

  • Lecture #2 describes nuclear radiation and details its various manifestations.

  • Lecture #3 probes the nature of waves, the electromagnetic spectrum and introduces the gamma photon. Without a proper understanding of the penetrating nature of gamma photons, it is unlikely that people will escape unharmed in the enhanced radiation environment.

  • Lectures #4 & 5 then proceed to describe the biological effects of nuclear radiation, setting the groundwork for a study of the medical effects later in the course.

  • Lecture #6 sets the tone for the remaining lectures, exploring basic principles of radiation safety.

  • Lectures #7 & 8 provide basic information regarding radiation detection and measurement plus a buyer’s guide of simple, inexpensive instruments that will provide the purchaser with knowledge on how to safely navigate within the enhanced radiation environment.

  • Lectures #9 & 10 will introduce the scientific principles of how to shield against gamma photons, followed by a detailed visual survey of a variety of do-it-yourself shelters and their strengths and weaknesses.

  • Lecture #11 describes the hazards of taking into the body radioactive particles followed by Lecture #12 detailing protective decontamination practices if one is exposed to fallout contamination.

  • Lecture #13 reveals the consequences of failure to practice radiation safety with a clear explanation of Acute Radiation Syndrome and the cancer consequences of low levels of internal contamination.

  • The last two lectures of the course explore the possible acquisition of food in the post-apocalyptic environment. Farming and Fallout describes radiation safety for farmers and gardeners and its possibilities for success.

  • The final lecture, Foraging for food in the Enhanced Radiation Environment, will explore the contaminated environments created by the accidents at Chernobyl and Fukushima and provide guidelines on food acquisition prior to nuclear war and how to go about finding or producing edible material in the contaminated environment.



  1. Length: 7 1/2 weeks

  2. 15 Lessons

  3. Live presentations

  4. A replay of lectures until Nov 17

  5. Ability to contact our presenter

  6. Effort: 3-4 hours per week

  7. Level: Beginner-Intermediate

  8. Cost: $70



To register, please take the time to fill out the information below.

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