Derivation of Apparent Diffusion Coefficient based on Time Variation of the Relaxation Mass Depths of Cs-137 in Soil Contaminated by the Fukushima NPP Accident

Haruo Sato, Masaharu Hirota

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The accident at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant occurred following the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011, and led to the release of volatile radionuclides, which were deposited on the environment in the Fukushima prefecture and the neighbouring areas. After the short-lived I-131, radiocaesium such as Cs-134 and Cs-137 have controlled radiation dose rate. The authors derived the apparent diffusion coefficients (Da) of some radionuclides such as Cs-134 and Cs-137 based on time variation of the depth distributions of respective radionuclides in soil obtained in field investigations in earlier studies. Almost all Da-values were of order 10 -14 (m 2 ·s -1 ) and well consistent with distribution coefficients (Kd) obtained from batch experiments. Whilst, field investigations for the relaxation mass depths of Cs-137 in soil by a scraper plate method were conducted at totally 85 locations over a period of nearly 6 years from December 2011 in the Fukushima prefecture and the neighbouring prefectures, and time variation of the effective relaxation mass depths was recently reported. Consequently, the effective relaxation mass depths of Cs-137 showed a tendency to linearly increase with increasing time. This indicates that radiocaesium gradually moves to the deeper part of soil with time. In this study, Da based on Fick's diffusion equation was derived based on time variation of the effective relaxation mass depths of Cs-137 in soil. In order to calculate the Da based on Fick's law, correlation between relaxation depth and square root of elapsed time was derived from the correlation between effective relaxation mass depth and elapsed time (where, relaxation depth is defined as the depth of 1/e of radionuclide concentration at the ground surface and can calculate by relaxation mass depth/soil density). The calculated Da of Cs-137 was of order 10 -12 (m 2 ·s -1 ) , which was about 2 orders of magnitude higher than Da-values that the authors previously reported as described above. Considering that almost all relaxation depths of Cs-137 were shallow within 2cm in depth from the ground surface and near the surface layer of soil is unsaturated, it is considered that Da estimated in this analysis includes the effect of dispersion by advection (by flow in the vertical direction of rainwater).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1001-1007
Number of pages7
JournalMRS Advances
Volume4
Issue number17-18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2019

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accidents
soils
Accidents
derivation
diffusion coefficient
Soils
Radioisotopes
radioactive isotopes
Fick's laws
Advection
Relaxation time
Nuclear power plants
Dosimetry
Earthquakes
nuclear power plants
advection
Japan
surface layers
tendencies
earthquakes

Keywords

  • adsorption
  • Cs
  • diffusion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this

Derivation of Apparent Diffusion Coefficient based on Time Variation of the Relaxation Mass Depths of Cs-137 in Soil Contaminated by the Fukushima NPP Accident. / Sato, Haruo; Hirota, Masaharu.

In: MRS Advances, Vol. 4, No. 17-18, 01.01.2019, p. 1001-1007.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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abstract = "The accident at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant occurred following the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011, and led to the release of volatile radionuclides, which were deposited on the environment in the Fukushima prefecture and the neighbouring areas. After the short-lived I-131, radiocaesium such as Cs-134 and Cs-137 have controlled radiation dose rate. The authors derived the apparent diffusion coefficients (Da) of some radionuclides such as Cs-134 and Cs-137 based on time variation of the depth distributions of respective radionuclides in soil obtained in field investigations in earlier studies. Almost all Da-values were of order 10 -14 (m 2 ·s -1 ) and well consistent with distribution coefficients (Kd) obtained from batch experiments. Whilst, field investigations for the relaxation mass depths of Cs-137 in soil by a scraper plate method were conducted at totally 85 locations over a period of nearly 6 years from December 2011 in the Fukushima prefecture and the neighbouring prefectures, and time variation of the effective relaxation mass depths was recently reported. Consequently, the effective relaxation mass depths of Cs-137 showed a tendency to linearly increase with increasing time. This indicates that radiocaesium gradually moves to the deeper part of soil with time. In this study, Da based on Fick's diffusion equation was derived based on time variation of the effective relaxation mass depths of Cs-137 in soil. In order to calculate the Da based on Fick's law, correlation between relaxation depth and square root of elapsed time was derived from the correlation between effective relaxation mass depth and elapsed time (where, relaxation depth is defined as the depth of 1/e of radionuclide concentration at the ground surface and can calculate by relaxation mass depth/soil density). The calculated Da of Cs-137 was of order 10 -12 (m 2 ·s -1 ) , which was about 2 orders of magnitude higher than Da-values that the authors previously reported as described above. Considering that almost all relaxation depths of Cs-137 were shallow within 2cm in depth from the ground surface and near the surface layer of soil is unsaturated, it is considered that Da estimated in this analysis includes the effect of dispersion by advection (by flow in the vertical direction of rainwater).",
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