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Xenon 133 – Largest Civilian Noble Gas Release in History

Susanne Gerber

25.10.2011

Excerpts from the Oct. 21 joint press release by ZAMG and BOKU : “A new study by an international team of researchers estimates the emissions of the radioactive noble gas Xenon‐133 and the aerosol‐bound nuclide Caesium‐137 from the Japanese NPP Fukushima Daiichi.”…“The main result of the investigation is that the emissions from the power plant started earlier, lasted longer and are therefore higher than assumed in most studies conducted before.”…“Regarding the radioactive noble gas Xenon‐133, the results indicate an emission of 16700 Peta‐Becquerel (1 Becquerel is one radioactive decay per second, 1 Peta‐Becquerel equals 1015 Bq). This is the largest civilian noble gas release in history, exceeding the Chernobyl noble gas release by a factor of 2.5. There is strong evidence that emissions started already on 11 March 2011 at 6:00 UTC, which is immediately after the big earthquake. Xenon‐133 is neither ingested nor retained in the inhalation process and therefore of less health concern, but it is important for understanding the accident events. Regarding Cesium‐137, which is of high relevance for human health due to its physical properties and the long half‐life time of 30 years, the new estimate shows that emissions started earlier and ended later than assumed in most studies so far. The total release amounts to 36 PBq, which equals 40% of the Chernobyl emissions. About 20% of the caesium was deposited on Japanese territory, while about 80% was deposited in the water.”

The study was conducted by a team of researchers from the Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU) in Kjeller, Norway, the Institute for Meteorology of the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU‐Met) in Vienna, the Austrian Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics (ZAMG) in Vienna, the Institute of Energy Technologies from the Technical University of Catalonia in Barcelona (INTE), Spain, and by the Universities Space Research Association, Columbia, MD, USA.

SOURCE: 20111021_fukushima_review.pdf

Is anyone else curious why the Xenon-133 release from Fukushima is 250% higher than Chernobyl, yet the Cesium-137 release from Chernobyl is 250% higher than Fukushima?

h/t radioactive.eu.com

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Einsortiert unter:Fukushima, Radiation

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