Document Details


Title:
LETTER TO W J BAIR, SUBJECT: DOSIMETRY METHODS AND RESULTS FOR THE FORMER RESIDENTS OF BIKINI ATOLL
Author(s):
WACHHOLZ, B W [UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY]
Subject Terms:
SOILS; CESIUM 137; BODY BURDEN; BRAVO EVENT; MAPS; COBALT 60; POTASSIUM 40; STRONTIUM 90; YTTRIUM 90
Addressee:
BAIR B; BAIR W J
Document Location:
Location - NNSA/NSO Nuclear Testing Archive Address - P.O. Box 98521 City - Las Vegas State - NV Zip - 89193-8521 Phone - (702)794-5106 Fax - (702)862-4240 Email - CIC@NV.DOE.GOV
Document Type:
CORRESPONDENCE, LETTERS, MEMOS
Publication Date:
1980 Jan 22
Declassification Status:
Unknown
Document Pages:
0027
Accession Number:
NV0063388
Originating Research Org.:
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
OpenNet Entry Date:
1994 Aug 26
Description/Abstract:
THE U.S. GOVERNMENT UTILIZED BIKINI AND ENEWETAK ATOLLS IN THE NORTHER N MARSHALL ISLANDS OF MICRONESIA FOR ATMOSPHERIC TESTS OF NUCLEAR EXPL OSIVES IN THE 1940'S AND 1950'S. THE ORIGINAL INHABITANTS OF THESE AT OLLS WERE RELOCATED PRIOR TO THE TESTS; AND ONCE THE TESTING CEASED IN 1958, THEY PETITIONED THE GOVERNMENT TO ALLOW THEM TO RETURN. RADIOL OGICAL ANALYSES OF THE BIKINI ENVIRONMENT IN THE 1960'S INDICATED THAT WITH PROPER REHABILITATION, THE ATOLL COULD BE REINHABITED, AND THAT THE RESIDENTS WOULD RECEIVE ACCEPTABLE DOSES FROM RESIDUAL RADIOACTIV ITY. DURING THE EARLY 1970'S, A SMALL BUT GROWING POPULATION OF MARSH ALLESE PEOPLE REINHABITED BIKINI PRIMARILY TO ASSIST IN GOVERNMENT-SPO NSORED CLEANUP AND REHABITATION PROGRAMS. ENVIRONMENTAL AND PERSONNEL RADIOLOGICAL MONITORING PROGRAMS WERE BEGUN BY BROOKHAVEN NATIONAL LA BORATORY IN 1974 TO ENSURE THAT DOSES AND DOSE COMMITMENTS RECEIVED BY BIKINI RESIDENTS REMAINED WITHIN U.S. FEDERAL RADIATION COUNCIL GUIDE LINES. DRAMATIC INCREASES WERE NOTED IN CESIUM-137 BODY BURDENS AMONG THE INHABITANTS BETWEEN APRIL 1977 AND 1978, AND THESE OBSERVATIONS M AY HAVE PLAYED A SIGNIFICANT ROLE IN THE GOVERNMENT DECISION TO MOVE T HE 140 BIKINIANS IN RESIDENCE AT THAT TIME OFF OF THE ATOLL IN AUGUST 1978. THE AVERAGE CESIUM-137 BODY BURDEN FOR THE POPULATION WAS 2.3 UCI IN APRIL 1978, AND SUBSEQUENT WHOLE BODY COUNTS AFTER THE AUGUST DEPARTURE INDICATE THAT THIS WAS CLOSE TO THE EQUILBRIUM VALUE. SEVE RAL INDIVIDUALS, HOWEVER, EXCEEDED THE MAXIMUM PERMISSIBLE BODY BURDEN OF 3 UCI, AND SOME APPROACHED 6 UCI. THE RESULTANT TOTAL DOSE COMMIT MENT WAS LESS THAN 200 MREM FOR THE AVERAGE RESIDENT. THE AVERAGE TOT AL DOSE FOR THE MEAN RESIDENCE INTERVAL OF 4.5 YEARS WAS ABOUT 1 REM. THE SOURCES OF EXPOSURE, THE PROBABLE CAUSE OF THE UNEXPECTED INCREAS E IN CESIUN-137 BODYBURDENS, AND THE METHODS FOR CALCULATING RADIONUCL IDE INTAKE AND RESULTANT DOSES ARE DISCUSSED IN THIS PAPER. SUGGESTIO NS ARE OFFERED AS TO THE IMPLICATIONS OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT EXPOSURE PATHWAYS FOR THE FUTURE INHABITATION OF BIKINI AND ENEWETAK.


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