Modeled atmospheric radon concentrations from uranium mines

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Uranium mining and milling operations result in the release of radon from numerous sources of various types and strengths. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Clean Air Act, is assessing the health impact of air emissions of radon from underground uranium mines. In this case, the radon emissions may impact workers and residents in the mine vicinity. To aid in this assessment, the EPA needs to know how mine releases can affect the radon concentrations at populated locations. To obtain this type of information, Pacific Northwest Laboratory used the radon emissions, release characteristics and local meterological conditions for ... continued below

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Droppo, J.G. April 1, 1985.

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Description

Uranium mining and milling operations result in the release of radon from numerous sources of various types and strengths. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Clean Air Act, is assessing the health impact of air emissions of radon from underground uranium mines. In this case, the radon emissions may impact workers and residents in the mine vicinity. To aid in this assessment, the EPA needs to know how mine releases can affect the radon concentrations at populated locations. To obtain this type of information, Pacific Northwest Laboratory used the radon emissions, release characteristics and local meterological conditions for a number of mines to model incremental radon concentrations. Long-term, average, incremental radon concentrations were computed based on the best available information on release rates, plume rise parameters, number and locations of vents, and local dispersion climatology. Calculations are made for a model mine, individual mines, and multiple mines. Our approach was to start with a general case and then consider specific cases for comparison. A model underground uranium mine was used to provide definition of the order of magnitude of typical impacts. Then computations were made for specific mines using the best mine-specific information available for each mine. These case study results are expressed as predicted incremental radon concentration contours plotted on maps with local population data from a previous study. Finally, the effect of possible overlap of radon releases from nearby mines was studied by calculating cumulative radon concentrations for multiple mines in a region with many mines. The dispersion model, modeling assumptions, data sources, computational procedures, and results are documented in this report. 7 refs., 27 figs., 18 tabs.

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NTIS, PC A06/MF A01; 1.

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  • Other Information: Portions of this document are illegible in microfiche products. Original copy available until stock is exhausted

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  • Other: DE85011691
  • Report No.: PNL-5239
  • Grant Number: AC06-76RL01830
  • DOI: 10.2172/5677757 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 5677757
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc1093524

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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Creation Date

  • April 1, 1985

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Feb. 10, 2018, 10:06 p.m.

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  • April 19, 2018, 8:10 p.m.

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Droppo, J.G. Modeled atmospheric radon concentrations from uranium mines, report, April 1, 1985; Richland, Washington. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1093524/: accessed June 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.