Institute for Energy and Environmental Research (IEER)



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In this report we will provide a brief review of the environmental transport of two specific radionuclides. In Chapter Two we will consider the mobility of radium. This naturally occurring radionuclide is part of the uranium and thorium decay series, and is thus a potential concern in many areas where these elements have been mined or processed. In addition to the large number of sites with radium bearing waste, we chose to focus on this radionuclide in part due to the high concentrations of radium-226, and its thorium-230 parent, in the raffinate waste from the former Fernald Feed Material Production Plant in Ohio. In Chapter Three we will discuss the mobility of plutonium, and to some extent other transuranic elements. Contamination with these anthropogenic radionuclides has been discovered at a number of DOE sites and, due to the long half lives of many of these elements, they are a potential concern for long-term management.

This research was completed money allocated during Round 5 of the Citizens’ Monitoring and Technical Assessment Fund (MTA Fund). Clark University was named conservator of these works.

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Institute for Energy and Environmental Research (IEER)




radionuclides, nuclear weapons, nuclear weapons testing, environment, non-governmental organizations, United States Department of Energy, tribal governments, environmental cleanup, radioactive fallout, radioactive waste


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Takoma Park, MD

The Environment Transport of Radium and Plutonium: A Review By Brice Smith and Alexandra Amonette



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