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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 33  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 106-108

Assessment of potential inhalation exposure due to radon in uranium mine surface facilities

1 Health Physics Unit, Narwapahar, Jharkhand, India
2 Environmental Assessment Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai, India

Correspondence Address:
R Topno
Health Physics Unit, Narwapahar, Jharkhand
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Uranium mining is only one of it's kinds in the mining industry owing to associated inherent radiological hazards. Ore excavation processes may lead to release of radiologically significant materials into the surrounding environment. Such releases may lead to exposure of individuals during the course of operations near the source. The main features of radiological hazard associated in these are 222 Rn and it's progeny, external gamma levels, long lived alpha activity in the natural uranium ore dust. The most significant internal hazards in an underground uranium mines surface facilities arises due to inhalation of short-lived decay products of radon ( 222 Rn), which are daughter products of uranium ( 238 U). The present paper provides an estimate of inhalation dose to radiation workers engaged at the surface facilities in the vicinity of underground mines of Narwapahar. A radon gas monitor AlphaGuard PQ 2000 PRO (Genitron Instruments, Germany) was used for the measurement of outdoor atmospheric 222 Rn concentrations in the vicinity of underground uranium mines surface facilities. Outdoor atmospheric 222 Rn concentrations were found in the range of 10 to 87 Bq.m -3 with arithmetic mean of 34 Bq.m -3 . Average annual internal dose due to radon and it's progeny to the workers in these areas have been worked out to 0.17 mSv.y -1 .

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