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Radon-222 is a naturally occurring radioactive gas in the uranium-238 decay series that has traditionally been called, simply, radon. The lung cancer risks associated with the inhalation of radon decay products have been well documented by epidemiological studies on populations of uranium miners. The realization that radon is a public health hazard has raised the need for sampling and analytical guidelines for field personnel. Several sampling and analytical methods are being used to document radon concentrations in ground water and surface water worldwide but no convenient, single set of guidelines is available. Three different sampling and analytical methods - bubbler, liquid scintillation, and field screening - are discussed in this paper. The bubbler and liquid scintillation methods have high accuracy and precision, and small analytical method detection limits of 0.2 and 10 pCi/l (picocuries per liter), respectively. The field screening method generally is used as a qualitative reconnaissance tool.
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Sampling and analysis for radon-222 dissolved in ground water and surface water