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J Environ Radioact. 2013 Oct;124:74-83. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvrad.2013.04.004. Epub 2013 May 10.

Dynamics of soil gas radon concentration in a highly permeable soil based on a long-term high temporal resolution observation series.

Author information

1
Lithosphere Fluid Research Laboratory, Department of Petrology and Geochemistry, Eötvös University, Pázmány Péter sétány 1/C, 1117 Budapest, Hungary. sz_k_zs@yahoo.de

Abstract

This paper studies the temporal variation of soil gas radon activity concentration in a highly permeable (k = 2.0E-11 m(2)) sandy-gravelly soil in order to understand if temporal variation of soil gas radon activity concentration can affect geogenic radon potential determination. Geogenic radon potential provides information about the potential risk from radon. Its calculation takes into account the equilibrium, saturated at infinite depth, soil gas radon activity concentration (c∞). This concentration may vary at annual time scale due to the environmental conditions. A long-term (yearly) and high temporal resolution (15 min) observation, applied in this study, reveal various temporal features such as long-term trend, seasonality, daily periodicity and sudden events in soil gas radon time series. Results show seasonal and daily periodical variation of the measured soil gas radon activity concentration (csoilRn) in a highly permeable sandy-gravelly soil with definite seasons without obvious long transitional periods. The winter (from October 2010 to April 2011) is characterized by 2.5 times higher average soil gas radon activity concentration (median is 7.0 kBq m(-3)) than the summer (August, September 2010 and May, June, July 2011) (median is 2.8 kBq m(-3)). Daily periodicity, which is much less than the seasonal one, controls the soil gas radon activity concentration mainly in the summer season. Average (AM) value of csoilRn is higher at night than in the daytime with about 18% and 3.8% in summer and in winter, respectively. As a conclusion, in case of single csoilRn measurement on a highly permeable (k ≥ 2.0E-11 m(2)) soil, similar to our test site, csoilRn should be corrected according to the seasons for calculating the equilibrium activity concentration c∞ value.

KEYWORDS:

Diurnal periodicity; Radon gas; Seasonality; Time series analysis

PMID:
23669415
DOI:
10.1016/j.jenvrad.2013.04.004
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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