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Bokor I.,Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency ARPANSA 619 Lower Plenty Road | Sdraulig S.,Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency ARPANSA 619 Lower Plenty Road | Jenkinson P.,Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency ARPANSA 619 Lower Plenty Road | Madamperuma J.,Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency ARPANSA 619 Lower Plenty Road | Martin P.,Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency ARPANSA 619 Lower Plenty Road
Journal of Environmental Radioactivity | Year: 2015

An automated unit was developed for the in-situ extraction of radiocaesium (137Cs and 134Cs) from large volumes of seawater to achieve very low detection limits. The unit was designed for monitoring of Australian ocean and coastal waters, including at ports visited by nuclear-powered warships.The unit is housed within a robust case, and is easily transported and operated. It contains four filter cartridges connected in series. The first two cartridges are used to remove any suspended material that may be present in the seawater, while the last two cartridges are coated with potassium copper hexacyanoferrate for caesium extraction. Once the extraction is completed the coated cartridges are ashed. The ash is transferred to a small petri dish for counting of 137Cs and 134Cs by high resolution gamma spectrometry for a minimum of 24h.The extraction method was validated for the following criteria: selectivity, trueness, precision, linearity, limit of detection and traceability. The validation showed the unit to be fit for purpose with the method capable of achieving low detection limits required for environmental samples. The results for the environmental measurements in Australian seawater correlate well with those reported in the Worldwide Marine Radioactivity Study (WOMARS).The cost of preparation and running the system is low and waste generation is minimal. © 2015. Source

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