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J Environ Radioact. 2009 Oct;100(10):823-30. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvrad.2009.06.003. Epub 2009 Jul 3.

Measuring the radium-226 activity using a multidetector gamma-ray coincidence spectrometer.

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Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, University of Montenegro, Cetinjski put b.b., Podgorica, Montenegro.


The method is based on coincidence counting of the 609 keV photons from two-, three- and four-step cascade transitions which follow beta(-)-decay of (214)Bi, developed on the six-crystal spectrometer PRIPYAT-2M. As regards the determination of the activity of (226)Ra and its decay products, the double coincidences mode of counting is the optimum one because of the highest spectrometer sensitivity. Minimum detectable radium activity concentration in that mode of counting in a soil sample is estimated to be 0.68 Bq kg(-1) for live measuring time of 897.4s, while it was 2.03 Bq kg(-1) over 10 002.9s in the case of the HPGe spectrometer. Using the double coincidences method, the (226)Ra activity was determined in soil and sand samples from the Coastal region of Montenegro. The measurements were performed much faster than when an HPGe spectrometer is used, and the results showed relatively low level of the radium activity concentration.

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