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Self-absorption corrections in gamma-ray spectrometry applied to NORM industrial samples

AutorMantero, Juan; Vidmar, T.; Hurtado-Bermúdez, Santiago; García-Tenorio, R.
Fecha de publicación2014
CitaciónICRER 2014
ResumenHigh resolution gamma spectrometry is a versatile non-destructive radiometric technique that makes simultaneous determination of several radionuclides possible with little sample preparation. However, application of self-absorption corrections is a must, especially in the low energy range, if one hopes to obtain correct values of activity concentrations. Usually, NORM samples feature a wide variety of densities and composition, as opposed to the standards used in efficiency calibration, which are often water-based solutions. For that reason self-absorption effects must be considered individually in every sample. In this work an experimental and a semi-empirical method of self-absorption correction were applied to NORM samples and compared with each other in order to establish best practice in relation to the circumstances of an individual laboratory. Following the experimental methodology, transmission measurements of absorption factors with point sources were carried out, while the semi-experimental methodology involved the application of the EFFTRAN code, based on the 'efficiency transfer' principle. Both methods were validated by applying them to a set of spiked NORM matrices coming from the TiO2 industry located in the south-west of Spain in order to determine the flow of several radionuclides from the Uranium and Thorium series though the production process. The main advantages and disadvantages of the two approaches used are highlighted, focusing on the low energy range (46-200 keV). EFFTRAN qualities are its ease of use, its short-run time and good performance with samples of a well-known composition, while the transmission technique can be applied almost under any circumstances, providing that a suitable set of point sources covering the energy range of interest is at hand.
DescripciónResumen del póster presentado a la "3rd International Conference on Radioecology and Environmental Radioactivity" celebrada en Barcelona (España) del 7 al 12 de septiembre de 2014.
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