The Exposure Rate Conversion Factor for Nuclear Fallout [electronic resource].
- Washington, D.C. : United States. Dept. of Energy, 2009.
Oak Ridge, Tenn. : Distributed by the Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Dept. of Energy.
- Physical Description:
- PDF-file: 15 pages; size: 1.8 Mbytes
- Additional Creators:
- Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, United States. Department of Energy, and United States. Department of Energy. Office of Scientific and Technical Information
- Restrictions on Access:
- Free-to-read Unrestricted online access
- Nuclear fallout is comprised of approximately 2000 radionuclides. About 1000 of these radionuclides are either primary fission products or activated fission products that are created during the burn process. The exposure rate one meter above the surface produced by this complex mixture of radionuclides varies rapidly with time since many of the radionuclides are short-lived and decay numerous times before reaching a stable isotope. As a result, the mixture of radionuclides changes rapidly with time. Using a new code developed at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the mixture of radionuclides at any given point in time can be calculated. The code also calculates the exposure rate conversion factor (ECF) for all 3864 individual isotopes contained in its database based on the total gamma energy released per decay. Based on the combination of isotope mixture and individual ECFs, the time-dependent variation of the composite exposure rate conversion factor for nuclear fallout can be easily calculated. As example of this new capability, a simple test case corresponding to a 10 kt, uranium-plutonium fuel has been calculated. The results for the time-dependent, composite ECF for this test case are shown in Figure 1. For comparison, we also calculated the composite exposure rate conversion factor using the conversion factors found in Federal Guidance Report No.12 (FGR-12) published by ORNL, which contains the conversion factors for approximately 1000 isotopes. As can be noted from Figure 1, the two functions agree reasonably well at times greater than about 30 minutes. However, they do not agree at early times since FGR-12 does not include all of the short-lived isotopes that are produced in nuclear fallout. It should also be noted that the composite ECF at one hour is 19.7 R/hr per Ci/m². This corresponds to 3148 R/hr per 1 kt per square mile, which agrees reasonably well with the value of 3000 R/hr per 1 kt per square mile as quoted by Glasstone. We have also tabulated the top 50 contributors to the exposure rate at various points in time following a detonation. These major contributors are given in Table 1.
- Report Numbers:
- E 1.99:llnl-tr-410524
- Other Subject(s):
- Published through SciTech Connect.
Spriggs, G D.
- Funding Information:
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