Limits of radioactive dating. Radiocarbon dating.



Limits of radioactive dating

Limits of radioactive dating

NORM results from activities such as burning coal, making and using fertilisers, oil and gas production. Uranium mining exposes those involved to NORM in the uranium orebody. Radon in homes is one occurrence of NORM which may give rise to concern and action to control it, by ventilation.

All minerals and raw materials contain radionuclides of natural origin. The most important for the purposes of radiation protection are the radionuclides in the U and Th decay series.

For most human activities involving minerals and raw materials, the levels of exposure to these radionuclides are not significantly greater than normal background levels and are not of concern for radiation protection.

However, certain work activities can give rise to significantly enhanced exposures that may need to be controlled by regulation. Material giving rise to these enhanced exposures has become known as naturally occurring radioactive material NORM. NORM is the acronym for Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material, which potentially includes all radioactive elements found in the environment. However, the term is used more specifically for all naturally occurring radioactive materials where human activities have increased the potential for exposure compared with the unaltered situation.

Long-lived radioactive elements such as uranium, thorium and potassium and any of their decay products, such as radium and radon are examples of NORM.

These elements have always been present in the Earth's crust and atmosphere, and are concentrated in some places, such as uranium orebodies which may be mined.

However from the perspective of radiation doses to people, such a distinction is completely arbitrary. However certain industries handle significant quantities of NORM, which usually ends up in their waste streams, or in the case of uranium mining, the tailings dam. Over time, as potential NORM hazards have been identified, these industries have increasingly become subject to monitoring and regulation.

However, there is as yet little consistency in NORM regulations among industries and countries. This means that material which is considered radioactive waste in one context may not be considered so in another. Also, that which may constitute low-level waste in the nuclear industry might go entirely unregulated in another industry see section below on recycling and NORM. The acronym TENORM, or technologically enhanced NORM, is often used to refer to those materials where the amount of radioactivity has actually been increased or concentrated as a result of industrial processes.

This paper addresses some of these industrial sources, and for simplicity the term NORM will be used throughout. Excluding uranium mining and all associated fuel cycle activities, industries known to have NORM issues include: The coal industry mining and combustion.

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Limits of radioactive dating

NORM results from activities such as burning coal, making and using fertilisers, oil and gas production. Uranium mining exposes those involved to NORM in the uranium orebody. Radon in homes is one occurrence of NORM which may give rise to concern and action to control it, by ventilation.

All minerals and raw materials contain radionuclides of natural origin. The most important for the purposes of radiation protection are the radionuclides in the U and Th decay series. For most human activities involving minerals and raw materials, the levels of exposure to these radionuclides are not significantly greater than normal background levels and are not of concern for radiation protection. However, certain work activities can give rise to significantly enhanced exposures that may need to be controlled by regulation.

Material giving rise to these enhanced exposures has become known as naturally occurring radioactive material NORM. NORM is the acronym for Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material, which potentially includes all radioactive elements found in the environment. However, the term is used more specifically for all naturally occurring radioactive materials where human activities have increased the potential for exposure compared with the unaltered situation.

Long-lived radioactive elements such as uranium, thorium and potassium and any of their decay products, such as radium and radon are examples of NORM. These elements have always been present in the Earth's crust and atmosphere, and are concentrated in some places, such as uranium orebodies which may be mined.

However from the perspective of radiation doses to people, such a distinction is completely arbitrary. However certain industries handle significant quantities of NORM, which usually ends up in their waste streams, or in the case of uranium mining, the tailings dam. Over time, as potential NORM hazards have been identified, these industries have increasingly become subject to monitoring and regulation.

However, there is as yet little consistency in NORM regulations among industries and countries. This means that material which is considered radioactive waste in one context may not be considered so in another. Also, that which may constitute low-level waste in the nuclear industry might go entirely unregulated in another industry see section below on recycling and NORM.

The acronym TENORM, or technologically enhanced NORM, is often used to refer to those materials where the amount of radioactivity has actually been increased or concentrated as a result of industrial processes. This paper addresses some of these industrial sources, and for simplicity the term NORM will be used throughout.

Excluding uranium mining and all associated fuel cycle activities, industries known to have NORM issues include: The coal industry mining and combustion.

Limits of radioactive dating

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2 Comments

  1. Individual survival and population sizes depend on such factors as predation, disease, availability of resources, and parameters of the physical environment. Thus the decreasing K-Ar ages would represent the passage of time, but not necessarily related to their absolute radiometric ages.

  2. Many lenses turn yellow due to aging of the Canada Balsam adhesives used to glue lenses together. So magma holds tremendous amounts of argon. Samples that give evidence of being disturbed can give correct dates.

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