Data comprise radionuclide deposition, radioactivity dose measurements, radioactive particle activity and physical characteristic information from soil samples collected within and around the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone (CEZ) following the Chernobyl nuclear accident in 1986.
Data include radiocaesium, radiostrontium and soil chemistry parameters from soils collected in 1997, plutonium isotope measurements in soil samples and soil layers collected in 2000 and 2001, 'Hot particle' dataset presenting radionuclide activity and some physical characteristics of 'hot particles' extracted from soils collected in the Ukraine and Poland between 1995 and 1997; and Ivankov region data (radionuclide activity concentrations and natural background dose measurements) from a survey of the Ivankov region, immediately to the south of the CEZ conducted in 2014.
Funding for preparing this data set was provided by the EU COMET project (http://www.radioecology-exchange.org/content/comet) and TREE (http://www.ceh.ac.uk/tree) project funded by the NERC, Environment Agency and Radioactive Waste Management Ltd. under the RATE programme.
Publication date: 2017-07-24
Soil samples were dried, sieved (1 mm sieve) and homogenized. Sub-samples were taken from each sample for the determination of the total contents of radionuclides:
Gamma spectrometry measurements were performed using HPGe-detectors, of 30 % relative efficiency and 1.90 keV FWHM for 1333 keV (GEM-30185, EG&G ORTEC, USA) and a multichannel analyser (ADCAM-300, ORTEC, USA) using GammaVision32 software. The efficiency calibration was carried out for the 1 L Marinelli geometry using a spiked soil sample containing 241Am, 243Am, 152Eu, 154Eu, 137Cs, 40K. The average counting time was about 1 hour; for samples of lower activity the counting time was extended to obtain an acceptable error on the measurement (<30 % at 95th percentile confidence interval).
The activity of 90Sr was determined using a radiochemical method with treatment of the samples by boiling in 6M nitric acid for four hours.
Standard methods were used to determine organic matter content (GOST 26213-91), pHH2O (GOST 26423-85), pHKcl (GOST 26483-85), hydrolytic acidity (determined using the Kappen method (GOST 26212-91)), exchangeable Ca (GOST 26487-85), exchangeable K and P contents were determined using a method appropriate to the specific soil type (GOST 26207-91, GOST26204-91).