Particle size and radionuclide levels in some West Cumbrian soils

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doi: 10.1016/0048-9697(88)90248-3
Authors:Livens, F. R.; Baxter, M. S.
Author Affiliations:Primary:
Merlewood Res. Stn., Inst. Terr. Ecol., Grange-over-Sands, Cumbria, United Kingdom
Scott. Univ. Res. and React. Cent., United Kingdom
Volume Title:Environmental radiochemical analysis; proceedings of the Fifth symposium
Volume Authors:Bates, T. H., editor; Crook, M.; Harvey, B. R.; Lally, A. E.; Salmon, L.; Ware, A. R.
Source:The Science of the Total Environment, Vol.70(Part B), p.1-17; Environmental radiochemical analysis, Harwell, United Kingdom, Oct. 1-3, 1986, edited by T. H. Bates, M. Crook, B. R. Harvey, A. E. Lally, L. Salmon and A. R. Ware. Publisher: Elsevier, Amsterdam, Netherlands. ISSN: 0048-9697
Publication Date:1988
Note:In English. 17 refs.Special Issue; illus. incl. 6 tables
Summary:Four west Cumbrian soils of contrasting type, together with an estuarine silt sample, were separated into different particle size fractions by a combination of sieving and settling techniques. The sub-samples thus isolated were analysed by quantitative gamma -ray spectrometry for several nuclides, principally 137Cs, 106Ru and 241Am, followed by chemical separation and alpha -spectrometric determination of 238,239+240Pu. A simple empirical method of correction for differing sample sizes, and hence counting geometries, was developed for gamma -spectrometry and was found to give good results. The correction technique is based on calibrating each detector over a range of sample depths in the container using a multi-nuclide standard, and hence calculating an efficiency correction factor. In all the samples, the radionuclides were concentrated into the finer size fractions, with the clay- sized (<2 mu m) particles showing enrichment of Pu from 1.5 to 40 times that in the bulk samples, of Am from 2 to 40 times and of 137Cs from 3 to 35 times. The enhancement was greatest for all radionuclides in a sandy soil with a very low clay content (0.2% by weight) and it was found that, as the abundance of fine particles increased, so the concentration effect decreased. (Authors' abstract) [A.W.H.]
Subjects:Effects; Environmental geology; Geochemistry; Grain size; Isotopes; Pollution; Radioactive isotopes; Soils; Cumbria England; England; Europe; Great Britain; United Kingdom; Western Europe
Abstract Numbers:88M/5316
Record ID:1988046284
Copyright Information:GeoRef, Copyright 2019 American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from Mineralogical Abstracts, United Kingdom, Twickenham, United Kingdom
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