A Process Model to Characterize Airborne Radionuclide Emissions and Transport using Radiological and Meteorological Measurements

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Williams, Dwight
Pertmer, Gary A
The radionuclide analysis model developed and validated in this study is the first one ever to integrate human judgment throughout the analytical process. Therefore, besides relating the generation, transport, and measurement of anomalous anthropogenic radionuclides, this model enables many associated tasks to be achieved that could not be performed using existing models. These tasks include thoroughly characterizing radionuclide detection sites, effectively processing qualitative data, and correcting data during processing. The study outlines the model as a highly detailed itemized procedure and validates the model through four case studies. Each case study is able to demonstrate a specific novelty of the model, although multiple novel and useful qualities of the model can be found in all of the case studies. Case Study 1 shows the model's ability to perform site characterizations by determining the presence of 50 radionuclides at a site where only seven had been identified previously. In Case Study 2, the model is shown to be able to isolate a specific emission location through the effective incorporation of qualitative data. Case Study 3 demonstrates the model's ability to perform complicated radionuclide analysis completely independent of computational models. Through Case Study 4, the model is shown to be capable of processing errant data that could not be analyzed computationally. Besides the usefulness of each of the novelties, the model offers many practical values, including its ability to normalize analysis amongst radionuclide analysts with varied levels of experience -- effectively enabling junior level analysts to perform senior level analysis.