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The Characterization of Biotic and Abiotic Media Upgradient and Downgradient of the Los Alamos Canyon Weir

Description: As per the Mitigation Action Plan for the Special Environmental Analysis of the actions taken in response to the Cerro Grande Fire, sediments, vegetation, and small mammals were collected directly up- and downgradient of the Los Alamos Canyon weir, a low-head sediment control structure located on the northeastern boundary of Los Alamos National Laboratory, to determine contaminant impacts, if any. All radionuclides ({sup 3}H, {sup 137}Cs, {sup 238}Pu, {sup 239,240}Pu, {sup 90}Sr, {sup 241}Am, {sup 234}U, {sup 235}U and {sup 238}U) and trace elements (Ag, As, Ba, Be, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb, Sb, Se, and Tl) in these media were low and most were below regional upper level background concentrations (mean plus three sigma). The very few constituents that were above regional background concentrations were far below screening levels (set from State and Federal standards) for the protection of the human food chain and the terrestrial environment.
Date: January 15, 2006
Creator: Fresquez, P.R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Argonne National Laboratory site enviromental report for calendar year 2008.

Description: This report discusses the status and the accomplishments of the environmental protection program at Argonne National Laboratory for calendar year 2008. The status of Argonne environmental protection activities with respect to compliance with the various laws and regulations is discussed, along with the progress of environmental corrective actions and restoration projects. To evaluate the effects of Argonne operations on the environment, samples of environmental media collected on the site, at the site boundary, and off the Argonne site were analyzed and compared with applicable guidelines and standards. A variety of radionuclides were measured in air, surface water, on-site groundwater, and bottom sediment samples. In addition, chemical constituents in surface water, groundwater, and Argonne effluent water were analyzed. External penetrating radiation doses were measured, and the potential for radiation exposure to off-site population groups was estimated. Results are interpreted in terms of the origin of the radioactive and chemical substances (i.e., natural, fallout, Argonne, and other) and are compared with applicable environmental quality standards. A U.S. Department of Energy dose calculation methodology, based on International Commission on Radiological Protection recommendations and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's CAP-88 Version 3 (Clean Air Act Assessment Package-1988) computer code, was used in preparing this report.
Date: September 2, 2009
Creator: Golchert, N. W.; Davis, T. M. & Moos, L. P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly environmental radiological survey summary, first quarter 1998: 100, 200, 300, and 600 areas

Description: Routine radiological surveys are part of near-facility environmental monitoring, which monitors and helps direct the reduction of the radiological areas at the Hanford Site. The routine radiological surveys are performed by the Southern Area Remediation Support Group and the Site Support Services Radiological Control Group as directed by Environmental Monitoring and Investigations. The surveys performed have included inactive waste sites; outdoor radiological control areas; tank farm perimeters and associated diversion boxes, lift stations, and vent stations; perimeters of active or uncovered waste sites such as burial grounds, retention basins, ponds, process trenches, and ditches; underground pipelines; and road and rail surfaces. This report provides a summary of the radiological surveys performed in support of near-facility environmental monitoring at the Hanford Site during the first quarter 1998. The survey results and the status of actions required are also discussed. A waste site survey schedule, Routine Environmental Monitoring Schedule, Calendar year 1998, HNF-SP-0098-9, was developed by Environmental Monitoring and Investigations working with the Southern Area Remediation Support Group and the Site Support Services Radiological Control Group. Environmental Monitoring and Investigations reviews the radiological survey reports and files a copy for historical purposes and reference. Radiological conditions are tracked and trends noted. All sites are surveyed at least once each year. The survey frequencies for particular sites are based on site history, 1,551 radiological conditions, and general maintenance. Special surveys may be conducted at irregular frequencies if conditions warrant (e.g., growth of deep-rooted vegetation is noted at a waste site). Radiological surveys are conducted to detect surface contamination and document changes in vegetation growth, biological intrusion, erosion, and general site maintenance conditions. Survey data are compared with standards identified in HSRCM-1, Hanford Site Radiological Control Manual, as well as previous surveys to recognize possible trends, assess environmental impacts, and help determine where corrective ...
Date: April 27, 1998
Creator: McKinney, S.M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Tritium Concentration in the F- and H-Area Seeplines and Fourmile Branch at SRS: September 1997 Event and 1989-1997 Summary

Description: The Environmental Analysis Section (EAS) of the Savannah River Technology Center (SRTC) conducted a quarterly monitoring program of the Fourmile Branch (FMB) stream and its associated seepline located down gradient form the F- and H-Area Seepage Basins from May 1992 to May 1995. This report presents the results of the second semi-annual event in 1997 and summarizes the tritium data beginning with the 1989 and 1992 baseline sampling events.
Date: March 3, 1999
Creator: Koch, J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Data Summary Report for the 1998 Semiannual Tritium Surveys for Fourmile Branch and the F- and H-Area Seeplines

Description: This report presents a summary of the definitive data validation and verification for the 1998 semiannual tritium surveys for Fourmile Branch and the F- and H-Area Seeplines. The project was performed under the direction of WSRC EAS/Ecology. This report was prepared under the direction of EPD/EMS.
Date: January 26, 1999
Creator: Koch, J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Variations of Stream and Groundwater Uranium Concentrations with Rainfall in the North Carolina Piedmont

Description: This paper discusses how uranium contents of stream and groundwater samples from the North Carolina Piedmont vary systematically with rainfall. Data for three well-stream pairs sampled at three-week intervals for one year shows that uranium content of streams and groundwater correlates with the amount of local precipitation. The phenomenon is believed to be caused by oxidizing rainfall flushing uranium from the vadose zone.
Date: March 15, 2001
Creator: Price, V.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Using Absolute Humidity and Radiochemical Analyses of Water Vapor Samples to Correct Underestimated Atmospheric Tritium Concentrations

Description: Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) emits a wide variety of radioactive air contaminants. An extensive ambient air monitoring network, known as AIRNET, is operated on-site and in surrounding communities to estimate radioactive doses to the public. As part of this monitoring network, water vapor is sampled continuously at more than 50 sites. These water vapor samples are collected every two weeks by absorbing the water vapor in the sampled air with silica gel and then radiochemically analyzing the water for tritium. The data have consistently indicated that LANL emissions cause a small, but measurable impact on local concentrations of tritium. In early 1998, while trying to independently verify the presumed 100% water vapor collection efficiency, the author found that this efficiency was normally lower and reached a minimum of 10 to 20% in the middle of summer. This inefficient collection was discovered by comparing absolute humidity (g/m{sup 3}) calculated from relative humidity and temperature to the amount of water vapor collected by the silica gel per cubic meter of air sampled. Subsequent experiments confirmed that the elevated temperature inside the louvered housing was high enough to reduce the capacity of the silica gel by more than half. In addition, their experiments also demonstrated that, even under optimal conditions, there is not enough silica gel present in the sampling canister to absorb all of the moisture during the higher humidity periods. However, there is a solution to this problem. Ambient tritium concentrations have been recalculated by using the absolute humidity values and the tritium analyses. These recalculated tritium concentrations were two to three times higher than previously reported. Future tritium concentrations will also be determined in the same manner. Finally, the water vapor collection process will be changed by relocating the sampling canister outside the housing to increase collection efficiency and, ...
Date: June 1, 1999
Creator: Eberhart, C.F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Monitored plutonium aerosols at a soil cleanup site on Johnston Atoll

Description: Suspended plutonium in air was monitored for four periods near the operation of a stationary sorting system used to "mine" contaminated soil on Johnston Atoll. The monitoring periods were 14 October-14 November 1992, 20 October-15 November 1993, 16 August-3 November 1994, and 17 February-27 February 1995. Pairs of high volume air samplers were located at each of four locations of the process stream: the "spoils pile" that was the feedstock, the "plant area" near the hot soil gate of the sorter, the "clean pile" conveyer area where sorted clean soil was moved, and the "oversize soil" crushing area. These locations were monitored only during the working hours, while air monitoring was also done at an upwind, "background" area 24-hours per day. The median concentrations of Pu in "workplace" air (combined spoils pile, plant area, and clean pile sites) in 1992 was 397 aCi/m{sup 3} (15 {mu}Bq/m{sup 3}), but increased to median values of 23000 aCi/m{sup 3} (852 {mu}Bq/m{sup 3}) in August-November 1994 and 29800 aCi/m{sup 3} (1100 {mu}Bq/m{sup 3}) in February 1995. The highest median value at the worksites (29800 aCi/m{sup 3}) was more than 200 times lower than the regulatory level. The highest observed value was 84200 aCi/m{sup 3} at the spoils pile site, and this was more than 70 times lower than the regulatory level. The conclusion was that, in spite of the dusty environment, and the increased level of specific activity, we did not find that the soil processing posed any significant risk to workers during the observation periods 1992-1995.
Date: January 23, 1996
Creator: Shinn, J. H.; Fry, C. O. & Johnson, J. S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Geomorphology of plutonium in the Northern Rio Grande

Description: Nearly all of the plutonium in the natural environment of the Northern Rio Grande is associated with soils and sediment, and river processes account for most of the mobility of these materials. A composite regional budget for plutonium based on multi-decadal averages for sediment and plutonium movement shows that 90 percent of the plutonium moving into the system is from atmospheric fallout. The remaining 10 percent is from releases at Los Alamos. Annual variation in plutonium flux and storage exceeds 100 percent. The contribution to the plutonium budget from Los Alamos is associated with relatively coarse sediment which often behaves as bedload in the Rio Grande. Infusion of these materials into the main stream were largest in 1951, 1952, 1957, and 1968. Because of the schedule of delivery of plutonium to Los Alamos for experimentation and weapons manufacturing, the latter two years are probably the most important. Although the Los Alamos contribution to the entire plutonium budget was relatively small, in these four critical years it constituted 71--86 percent of the plutonium in bedload immediately downstream from Otowi.
Date: March 1, 1993
Creator: Graf, W.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Area G Perimeter Surface-Soil and Single-Stage Water Sampling: Environmental Surveillance for Fiscal Years 1996 and 1997, Group ESH-19

Description: Area Gin Technical Area 54, has been the principal facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory for the storage and disposal of low-level, solid mixed, and transuranic radioactive waste since 1957. Soil samples were analyzed for tritium, isotopic plutonium, americium-241, and cesium-137. Thirteen metals-silver, arsenic, barium, beryllium, cadmium, chromium, mercury, nickel, lead, antimony, selenium, thallium and zinc-were analyzed on filtered-sediment fractions of the single-stage samples using standard analytical chemistry techniques. During the two years of sampling discussed in this report elevated levels of tritium (as high as 716,000 pCi/L) in soil were found for sampling sites adjacent to the tritium burial shafts located on the south- central perimeter of Area G. Additionally, tritium concentrations in soil as high as 38,300 pCi/L were detected adjacent to the TRU pads in the northeast comer of Area G. Plutonium-238 activities in FY96 soils ranged from 0.001-2.866 pCi/g, with an average concentration of 0.336& 0.734 pCdg. Pu-238 activities in FY97 soils ranged from 0.002-4.890 pCi/g, with an average concentration of 0.437 & 0.928 pCdg. Pu-239 activities in FY96 soils ranged from 0.009 to 1.62 pCdg, with an average of 0.177- 0.297 pCdg. Pu-239 activities in FY97 soils ranged from 0.005 to 1.71 pCi/g, with an average of 0.290- 0.415 pCi/g. The locations of elevated plutonium readings were consistent with the history of plutonium disposal at Area G. The two areas of elevated Am-241 activity reflected the elevated activities found for plutonium, the average values for Am-241 on soils were 0.6-2.07 pCi/g, and 0.10-0.14 pCi/g respectively for samples collected in FY96 and FY97. CS-137 activities in soils had average values of 0.33 pCi/g, and 0.28 pCi/g respectively for samples collected in FY96 and 97. There was no perimeter area where soil concentrations of CS-137 were significantly elevated.
Date: October 1, 1998
Creator: Childs, Marquis & Conrad, Ron
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

LRAD surface monitoring results at TA-21

Description: In August/September 1994, NIS-6 personnel used LRAD soil surface monitor technology to characterize the extent of alpha contamination on the surface of a parking lot adjacent to TA-21, LANL, known as Material Disposal Area B. This report documents that monitoring. Based on this survey, there is no reason for concern about significant contamination in the parking area as a whole, although unexpected small hot spots could exist between the grid points where monitoring was performed. However, the grouping of high readings on the east side of the parking area does point to possible contamination at the level of 100 dpm/100 cm{sup 2} or less (above background). Further monitoring or remediation of this area seems appropriate. In addition, because this was an alpha survey, one cannot rule out contamination under the asphalt or possibly between layers if it was paved more than once.
Date: July 1, 1995
Creator: Bounds, J. A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Determining Original Inventory Amount of Radioactive Substances from Unmonitored Radionuclide Emissions

Description: The purpose of this document is to determine the air emissions inventory of the Savannah River Site. To satisfy regulatory requirements, a new equation has been developed to determine original inventory amounts from unmonitored radionuclide emissions.
Date: August 11, 1999
Creator: Hamilton, J.T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department