Description: We have initiated an investigation of the utility of marine plankton as bioconcentrating samplers of low-level marine radioactivity in the southern hemisphere. A literature review has shown that both freshwater and marine plankton have trace element and radionuclide concentration factors (relative to water) of up to 10/sup 4/. We participated in Operations Deepfreeze 1981 and 1982, collecting a total of 48 plankton samples from the USCGC Glacier on its Antarctic cruises. Battelle Pacific Northwest Laboratories sampled air, water, rain, and fallout. We were able to measure concentrations in plankton of the naturally-occurring radionuclides /sup 7/Be, /sup 40/K, and the U and Th series, and we believe that we have detected low levels of /sup 144/Ce and /sup 95/Nb in seven samples ranging as far south as 68/sup 0/. Biological identification of the plankton suggests a possible correlation between radionuclide concentration and the protozoa content of the samples. 7 references, 5 figures.
Date: March 23, 1984
Creator: Marsh, K.V. & Buddemeier, R.W.
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