Managing radioactively contaminated land: a method to assist the design of long-term remediation strategies

Cox, Glen Michael (2004) Managing radioactively contaminated land: a method to assist the design of long-term remediation strategies. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

This thesis describes the development of a system to assist the design of long-term remediation strategies for radioactively contaminated land. Existing radiological models, that estimate the uptake of radionuclides by plants and the doses arising from exposure to external radiation, were combined with a spatially implemented food-chain model, to allow the temporal and spatial variation of radionuclide transport through the terrestrial environment, and the resulting doses of exposed human populations, to be estimated. Doses are estimated using a novel method for the simulation of human populations, which includes the generation of sub-populations by Monte-Carlo sampling and consideration of the geographical origins of consumed food products. Various simulated radiological countermeasures have been incorporated into the system (e.g. clean-feeding of livestock), allowing the effects of potential remediation strategies to be assessed. Furthermore, a method has been developed which efficiently identifies the optimum set of countermeasures for a given scenario according to a defined merit function using cost benefit analysis, which can be extended to include terms that account for the preference for averting high levels of individual dose, and the social costs of a number of countermeasure side-effects (e.g. disruption of normal daily life).

To assess the applicability of the system, it was used to evaluate potential remediation strategies for hypothetical, large-scale nuclear accidents within two contrasting case study sites (Cumbria, UK and Zaragoza, Spain). In both case studies the system successfully identified optimal remediation strategies which were, according to the defined merit function, significant improvements upon simple food and dose rate restriction strategies.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Supervisors:Crout, N.M.J.
Uncontrolled Keywords:DSS, Decision Support System, contaminated land, nuclear accident, radiation protection
Faculties/Schools:UK Campuses > Faculty of Science > School of Biosciences
ID Code:85
Deposited By:Glen Michael Cox
Deposited On:25 Nov 2004
Last Modified:06 Feb 2009 14:44

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