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Iodine-129 in the Snake River Plain aquifer at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory, Idaho

Water-Resources Investigations Report 88-4165

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Abstract

From 1953 to 1983, an estimated 0.01 to 0.136 Ci (curies)/year of iodine-129 were contained in wastewater generated by the ICPP (Idaho Chemical Processing Plant) at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory. The wastewater was directly discharged to the Snake River Plain aquifer through a deep disposal well until February 9, 1984, when the well was replaced by an unlined infiltration pond; a second pond was put into use on October 17, 1985. For 1984-86, the annual amount of iodine-129 in wastewater discharged to the ponds ranged from 0.0064 to 0.039 Ci. In August 1986, iodine-129 concentrations in water from 35 wells near the ICPP ranged from less than the reporting level to 3.6 +or-0.4 pCi/L (picocuries/L). By comparison, in April 1977 the water from 20 wells contained a maximum of 27 +or-1 pCi/L of iodine-129; in 1981, the maximum concentration in water from 32 wells was 41 +or-2 pCi/L. The average concentrations of iodine-129 in water from 18 wells that were sampled in 1977, 1981 and 1986 were 4.0, 6.7 and 1.3 pCi/L, respectively. The marked decrease in the iodine-129 concentration from 1981 to 1986 is the result of three factors: (1) The amount of iodine-129 disposed annually; (2) a change from the routine use of the disposal well to the infiltration ponds; and (3) a dilution of the iodine-129 in the aquifer by recharge from the Big Lost River. (USGS)

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Iodine-129 in the Snake River Plain aquifer at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory, Idaho
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
88-4165
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1988
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey,
Description:
iv, 27 p. :ill., maps ;28 cm.