Volume 44, Number 5, 2009ECORAD 2008 - Radioecology and Environmental Radioactivity
|Page(s)||825 - 830|
|Published online||06 June 2009|
In-situ gamma-ray mapping of environmental radioactivity at iThemba LABS and associated risk assessment
Environmental Radioactivity Laboratory, Physics Group, iThemba Laboratory for Accelerator Based Sciences (LABS), PO Box 722, 7129 Somerset West, South Africa
2 Department of Physics, University of the Western Cape, Private Bag X17, 7537 Bellville, South Africa
3 Department of Physics and Engineering, University of Zululand, Private Bag X1001, 3886 KwaDlangezwa, South Africa
Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
In-situ and ex-situ measurements of environmental radioactivity were made on the iThemba LABS (iTL) grounds in South Africa. The MEDUSA and HPGe detector systems were used to make in-situ and ex-situ measurements, respectively. The MEDUSA was mounted ~0.5 m above the ground on a 4 × 4 vehicle to traverse [at ~2m∙s-1] the accessible portions of the iTL grounds. Spatial data (via a GPS receiver) were acquired every 1 s, and γ-ray spectra every 2 s. MEDUSA count rate maps were produced to show the spatial distribution of radioactivity on the grounds. The HPGe was used to measure the radioactivity in soil (and also in some grass) samples collected at particular spots on the iTL grounds. The sampled spots include six identified high activity spots (“hot spots”) and two “calibration spots”. The activity concentrations were determined for both the natural and anthropogenic radionuclides. The absorbed and effective doses (from external γ-ray irradiation) were also determined for the natural and anthropogenic radionuclides. The maximum effective dose to humans on the iTL grounds as a result of external exposure to natural and anthropogenic radionuclides was found to be well below the regulatory 1 mSv per year per member of public.
© EDP Sciences, 2009
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