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Dose due the Incorporation of Radionuclides Using Teeth as Bioindicators nearby Caetité Uranium Mines

Authors: Viviane S. Guimarães, Ícaro M. M. Brasil, Simara S. Campos, Roseli F. Gennari, Márcia R. P. Attie, Susana O. Souza.

Abstract:

Uranium mining and processing in Brazil occur in a northeastern area near to Caetité-BA. Several Non-Governmental Organizations claim that uranium mining in this region is a pollutant causing health risks to the local population,but those in charge of the complex extraction and production of“yellow cake" for generating fuel to the nuclear power plants reject these allegations. This study aimed at identifying potential problems caused by mining to the population of Caetité. In this, work,the concentrations of 238U, 232Th and 40K radioisotopes in the teeth of the Caetité population were determined by ICP-MS. Teeth are used as bioindicators of incorporated radionuclides. Cumulative radiation doses in the skeleton were also determined. The concentration values were below 0.008 ppm, and annual effective dose due to radioisotopes are below to the reference values. Therefore, it is not possible to state that the mining process in Caetité increases pollution or radiation exposure in a meaningful way.

Keywords: bioindicators, radiation dose, radioisotopesincorporation, uranium.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1329416

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