Long-term measurements of thoron, its airborne progeny and radon in 205 dwellings in Ireland.

Research paper by J J McLaughlin, M M Murray, L L Currivan, D D Pollard, V V Smith, S S Tokonami, A A Sorimachi, M M Janik

Indexed on: 16 Apr '11Published on: 16 Apr '11Published in: Radiation protection dosimetry


Long-term (circa 3 months) simultaneous measurements of indoor concentrations of thoron gas, airborne thoron progeny and radon were made using passive alpha track detectors in 205 dwellings in Ireland during the period 2007-09. Thoron progeny concentrations were measured using passive deposition monitors designed at the National Institute of Radiological Sciences (NIRS), Japan, whereas thoron gas concentrations were measured using Raduet detectors (Radosys, Budapest). Radon concentrations were measured in these dwellings by means of NRPB/SSI type alpha track radon detectors as normally used by the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII). The concentration of thoron gas ranged from <1 to 174 Bq m(-3) with an arithmetic mean (AM) of 22 Bq m(-3). The concentration of radon gas ranged from 4 to 767 Bq m(-3) with an AM of 75 Bq m(-3). For radon, the estimated annual doses were 0.1 (min), 19.2 (max) and 1.9 (AM) mSv y(-1). The concentration of thoron progeny ranged from <0.1 to 3.8 Bq m(-3) [equilibrium equivalent thoron concentration (EETC)] with an AM of 0.47 Bq m(-3) (EETC). The corresponding estimated annual doses were 2.9 (max) and 0.35 (mean) mSv y(-1). In 14 or 7% of the dwellings, the estimated doses from thoron progeny exceeded those from radon.