Renew. Energy Environ. Sustain.
Volume 5, 2020
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Published online||11 August 2020|
Natural radioactivity measurement of gold mine tailings in Vatukoula, Fiji Islands
Department Meteorology & Environmental Science, College of Applied Sciences, Fiji National University, PO Box 5529, Lautoka, Fiji
2 Department of Physics, School of Pure Sciences, College of Engineering, Science and Technology, Fiji National University, PO Box 5529, Lautoka, Fiji
* e-mail: Abdul.Malik@fnu.ac.fj
Accepted: 13 June 2020
Gold mining is one of the primary industry in Fiji, and it could expose the naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORMs) that may produce health risk to the people working in mining. The present study focuses on the assessment of soil samples in the vicinity of gold mining to assess the concentration of these nuclides. The average activity concentrations of Uranium (238U), Thorium (232Th) and Potassium (40K) in the soil samples from the gold mining area in Vatukoula, Fiji were computed using NaI(Tl) detector. The activity concentrations varied from 30.7 Bq kg−1 and 175.73 Bq kg−1 for 238U and 40K with the absence of 232Th in the decommissioned site. 19.49 Bq kg−1, 123.06 Bq kg−1 and 86.86 Bq kg−1 was determined for 238U, 232Th and 40K of the commissioned sites respectively which is less than the world averages according to the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation report , except for 232Th which is expected to be higher due to the mineral composition of monazite derivatives. Our preliminary results on the activity of these radioactive nuclides demonstrate that the mining activities at Vatukoula poses no significant radionuclide hazard to the miners and the general public.
© A.T.W. Rabuku and A.Q. Malik, published by EDP Sciences, 2020
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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