Systematics Of Radon At The Wairakei Geothermal Region, New Zealand

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Journal Article: Systematics Of Radon At The Wairakei Geothermal Region, New Zealand

Abstract
222Rn and 220Rn in geothermal steam at Wairakei, NZ, range from 11 to 19 500 Bq kg-1, and 25 to 16 700 Bq kg-1, respectively, but do not cause toxic concentrations in air. The wide ranges are mainly due to differences in different physical conditions underground (e.g. thin silica diffusion barriers), not geochemical differences. Groundwater Rn from outside the area probably plays only a minor role. 210Po was found present in non-toxic levels in the steam. Historical records showed little change in Rn concentration over several decades, therefore potentially hazardous concentrations might be predicted from early exploration. 220Rn concentrations at Wairakei should decrease as the field becomes steam-dominated. Rock surfaces were variably leached or enriched with U, Th, Ra and 210Pb, providing a possible model for deposition in cooler regions near the field. Estimates of 222Rn permeability ranged from 2 to 77% of the maximum possible, with a median of 13%.

Authors 
N. E. Whitehead, B. J. Barry, R. G. Ditchburn, C. J. Morris and M. K. Stewart








Published Journal 
Journal of Environmental Radioactivity, 2007





DOI 
10.1016/j.jenvrad.2006.09.003


 

Citation

N. E. Whitehead,B. J. Barry,R. G. Ditchburn,C. J. Morris,M. K. Stewart. 2007. Systematics Of Radon At The Wairakei Geothermal Region, New Zealand. Journal of Environmental Radioactivity. (!) .