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ASTM Selected Technical Papers
Effluent and Evironmental Radiation Surveillance
By
JJ Kelly
JJ Kelly
1
Radiological and Environmental Services Superintendent
,
Power Authority of the State of New York
, Indian Point No. 3 Nuclear Power Plant,
Buchanan, N.Y. 10511
;
editor
.
Search for other works by this author on:
ISBN-10:
0-8031-0329-8
ISBN:
978-0-8031-0329-0
No. of Pages:
374
Publisher:
ASTM International
Publication date:
1980

The radionuclide content of liquid radioactive wastes discharged from commercially operated light-water-cooled reactors in the United States is described on the basis of recent reports by reactor operators and special studies undertaken by Federal agencies. Discharges are discussed in terms of sources of radioactivity and treatment processes at thestations. Effluent values are compared with the model utilized by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

The radionuclide at highest concentration is consistently hydrogen-3 (H-3). Annual discharges usually range in the hundreds and thousands ofcuries at pressurized water reactors and up to 100 curies at boiling water reactors. The sum of all other fission and activation products usually totals a few curies per year; cobalt-58 (Co-58), cesium-134 (Cs-134), and cesium-137 (Cs-137) are consistently among the radionuclides at highest concentration. At least two stations have operated several years without significant radioactive liquid discharges.

Analysis of liquid radioactive waste for radionuclide content consiststypically of gamma-ray spectrometry with a germanium (lithium) detector and multichannel analyzer, liquid scintillation counting after distillation for H-3 measurements, and more elaborate radiochemical analysis for strontium-89 (Sr-89) and strontium-90 (Sr-90). Special studies at nuclear power stations have shown the presence of other radionuclides that can be analyzed only by specific radiochemical procedures. Among these are carbon-14 (C-14), phosphorus-32 (P-32), iron-55 (Fe-55), and nickel-63 (Ni-63). Approaches for including analysis of such additional radionuclides are discussed.

1.
Decker
,
T. R.
, “
Radioactive Materials Released from Nuclear Power Plants (1976)
,” U.S.
Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Report NUREG-0367,
1978
.
2.
Phillips
,
J. W.
and
Gruhlke
,
J.
, “
Summary of Radioactivity Released in Effluents from Nuclear Power Plants from 1973 to 1976
,”
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Report EPA-520/3-77-012,
1977
.
3.
Measuring, Evaluating, and Reporting Radioactivity in Solid Wastes and Releases of Radioactive Materials in Liquid and Gaseous Effluents from Light-Water-Cooled Nuclear Power Plants from 1973 to 1976
,”
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Regulatory Guide 1.21
,
1974
.
4.
Report of the UnitedNations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation
,”
United Nations
, New York,
1977
.
5.
Radioactive Effluents from Nuclear Power Stations in the Community
,”
Directorate of Health Protection, Commission of the European Communities
,
Luxembourg
,
1975
.
6.
Booth
,
R. S.
, “
A Compendium of Radionuclides Found in Liquid Effluents of Nuclear Power Stations
,”
U.S. Atomic Energy Commission
Report ORNL-TM-3801,
1975
.
7.
Calculation of Releases of Radioactive Materials in Gaseous and Liquid Effluents from Boiling Water Reactors
,”
Office of Standards Development, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Report NUREG-0016,
1976
.
8.
Calculation of Releases of Radioactive Materials in Gaseous and Liquid Effluents from Pressurized Water Reactors
,”
Office of Standards Development, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Report NUREG-0017,
1976
.
9.
Radioactivity
” in
Annual Book of ASTM Standards, Part 31, Water
,
American Society for Testing and Materials
.
10.
Examination of Water and Wastewater for Radioactivity
” in
Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater
,
American Public Health Association
,
New York
,
1971
, p. 583.
11.
Kahn
,
B.
 et al
, “
Radiological Surveillance Study at the Haddam Neck PWR Nuclear Power Station
,”
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Report EPA-520/3-74-007,
1974
.
12.
Blanchard
,
R. L.
 et al
, “
Radiological Surveillance Studies at the Oyster Creek BWR Nuclear Power Station
,”
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Report EPA-250/5-76-003,
1976
.
13.
Weiss
,
B.
,
personal communication concerning independent measurements of radionuclides in reactor system water
for the
Nuclear Regulatory Commission
,
1977
.
14.
The Radiochemistry of [Element]
,”
Subcommittee on Radiochemistry, NAS-NRC, U.S. Atomic Energy Commission
Reports NAS-NS 3001-3059,
1974
.
15.
Krieger
,
H. L.
and
Gold
,
S.
, “
Procedures for Radiochemical Analysis of Nuclear Reactor Aqueous Solutions
,”
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Report EPA-RA-73-014,
1973
.
16.
Lyon
,
W. S.
and
Ross
,
H. H.
,
Analytical Chemistry
 0003-2700, Vol.
50
,
1978
, p.80R.
17.
Fishman
,
M. J.
and
Erdman
,
D. E.
,
Analytical Chemistry
 0003-2700, Vol.
49
, p. 139R,
1977
.
18.
Kahn
,
B.
in
Water and Water Pollution Handbook
,
Marcel Dekker
,
New York
,
1973
, p. 1357.
19.
Environmental Radioactivity Laboratory Intercomparison Studies Program, 1978–1979
,” Quality Assurance Branch,
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Report EPA-600/4-78-032,
1978
.
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