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Title: Radon assay and purification techniques

Abstract

Radon is a source of background in many astroparticle physics experiments searching for rare low energy events. In this paper an overview about radon in the field is given including radon detection techniques, radon sources and material screening with respect to radon emanation. Finally, also the problem of long-lived radioactive {sup 222}Rn-daughters and the question of gas purification from radon is addressed.

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Max-Planck-Institut für Kernphysik, Saupfercheckweg 1, D-69117 Heidelberg (Germany)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22224171
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: AIP Conference Proceedings; Journal Volume: 1549; Journal Issue: 1; Conference: LRT 2013: 4. international workshop on low radioactivity techniques, Assergi (Italy), 10-12 Apr 2013; Other Information: (c) 2013 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY; DAUGHTER PRODUCTS; DETECTION; PURIFICATION; RADIATION SOURCES; RADIOACTIVITY; RADON; RADON 222; SCREENING

Citation Formats

Simgen, Hardy. Radon assay and purification techniques. United States: N. p., 2013. Web. doi:10.1063/1.4818086.
Simgen, Hardy. Radon assay and purification techniques. United States. doi:10.1063/1.4818086.
Simgen, Hardy. Thu . "Radon assay and purification techniques". United States. doi:10.1063/1.4818086.
@article{osti_22224171,
title = {Radon assay and purification techniques},
author = {Simgen, Hardy},
abstractNote = {Radon is a source of background in many astroparticle physics experiments searching for rare low energy events. In this paper an overview about radon in the field is given including radon detection techniques, radon sources and material screening with respect to radon emanation. Finally, also the problem of long-lived radioactive {sup 222}Rn-daughters and the question of gas purification from radon is addressed.},
doi = {10.1063/1.4818086},
journal = {AIP Conference Proceedings},
number = 1,
volume = 1549,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Aug 08 00:00:00 EDT 2013},
month = {Thu Aug 08 00:00:00 EDT 2013}
}
  • We succeeded to reduce the Kr contamination in liquid xenon by a factor of 1/1000 with a distillation system in Kamioka mine. Then, the remaining radioactivities (Radon and Kr) in purified liquid xenon were measured with the XMASS prototype detector. In this talk, the distillation system and the remaining internal radioactivity levels are reported.
  • Water assay techniques developed for measuring 222Rn, 226Ra and 224Ra in the SNO detector are presented. Recent upgrades to improve the performance of the techniques and to increase the sensitivity to lower levels are discussed.
  • Ventilation with fresh air has been, and will continue to be, the primary solution for controlling radon and radon-daughter activity in mines. However, procedures to make the ventilation process more effective and to reduce contamination have been proposed, such as sealing off of old workings, the use of coatings to reduce radon inflow, and mine pressurization. Air-cleaning techniques have proved successful in certain applications. For example, radon daughters can be removed by mechanical filtering and by electrostatic precipitation methods, both of which remove condensation nuclei to which radon daughters become attached. The radon gas that passes through continues to decay,more » but, in the absence of condensation nuclei, the daughters have large diffusion lengths and are trapped on the walls of air courses, thus inhibiting their growth. Radon gas has been successfully removed from air, although there are no known reports of this having been done in operating mines. It has been captured on activated charcoal and silica gel and chemically removed by reacting with a halogen fluoride and a metal fluoride. (auth)« less
  • The SNO+ experiment will study neutrinos while located 6,800 feet below the surface of the earth at SNOLAB. Though shielded from surface backgrounds, emanation of radon radioisotopes from the surrounding rock leads to back-grounds. The characteristic decay of radon and its daughters allows for an alpha detection technique to count the amount of Rn-222 atoms collected. Traps can collect Rn-222 from various positions and materials, including an assay skid that will collect Rn-222 from the organic liquid scintillator used to detect interactions within SNO+.