There are two types of sampling measurements taken as part of the on-going Radwatch environmental monitoring effort: basic gamma-counting to investigate the concentration of radioactive isotopes in the samples, and a more detailed investigation of the concentration of trace metals in the samples through neutron activation.

Gamma Measurements

The goal of the gamma counting analysis of environmental samples is to measure ambient concentrations of certain radioisotopes of interest. These radioisotopes included Cs-137, Cs-134, K-40, Bi-214, and Tl-208. Concentrations across a variety of samples are acquired and compared to each other and with reference samples. All sample results from 2013 on are presented and discussed on the Gamma Measurements page, and details of the measurement and analysis procedure are provided on the Technical Overview page.

Neutron Activation Measurements

The goal of the neutron activation analysis (NAA) measurements is to determine the elemental composition, specifically trace metals, of kelp, fish, and other sea life along the west coast of the Americas. Comparisons among the various locations will be made and determinations on whether isotopes found in the samples present a toxicity health hazard to the people living along the Pacific. All sample results are presented on the Neutron Activation Measurments page, and details of the analysis procedure are provided on the Technical Overview page.