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Utveckling av metod för retrospektiv bestämning av absorberad dos i korall medelst elektronspinnresonans
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology.
2006 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This diploma work was performed at the department for radiation physics at the Health University in Linköping. Its aim was to develop a method to retrospectively quantify the absorbed dose in coral. Coral is a material which suites well as a retrospective dosimeter because when exposed to radioactivity its induced free radicals are stable in time. The number of radicals is proportional to the accumulated dose so the dose can be calculated by quantifying the radicals. Therefore, coral can tell us something about the past environment and also be used in dating purposes.

A young, modern coral from the Red Sea was studied and also a fossil one which I was given from the Natural History Museum in Stockholm. It was estimated to be originated from the Tertiary period, i.e. 2-65 million years old.

To accurately calculate the corals’ accumulated doses I had to gain knowledge in a number of separate areas. The radicals were analyzed using electron spin resonance. This was possible because of the fact that free radicals contain unpaired electrons. Initially, the main goal was to study how to prepare the coral without neither mechanically inducing new radicals nor destroying the radiation induced radicals. When the preparation method was considered optimal the dose response was then crucial, i.e. how the number of radicals corresponded to radiation. To accurately quantify the absorbed doses the spectra needed to be modified and elaborated with signal analyses. By adding artificial irradiations to the samples the initial doses could be calculated. To estimate the age of a coral an assessment of the natural dose rate must be done. This was done by measure the disintegration activity of the samples. It was found that its main contributor was the 238U-series. The fossil’s minimum age was estimated to 3 million years whereas the ESR-noise made it impossible to calculate the dose in the modern coral. The detectable dose limit of the method was approximately 0.5 Gy, i.e. a minimum age of about 500 years. However, the modern coral was determined as an Elkhorn coral (family Acropora) which is a species with a fast growth rate. The coral’s size implicated its age to be about 100 years old. In addition, the method was put to the test by irradiating the young coral with an unknown dose. After modifying the method the absorbed dose was calculated to be 1.3 ± 0.3 Gy. The real dose was 1.2 Gy. Thus, the method exhibited large scales of uncertainties but it did nevertheless work sufficiently enough.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Institutionen för fysik, kemi och biologi , 2006. , 46 p.
Keyword [sv]
ESR, korall, retrospektiv dosimetri, datering, joniserande strålning, absorberad dos, fria radikaler
National Category
Physical Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-6084ISRN: LITH-IFM-EX—05/1569—SEOAI: diva2:21633
Subject / course
2006-01-27, Jordan-Fermi, Fysikhuset, Universitetet, Linköping, 10:15
Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics
Available from: 2006-03-20 Created: 2006-03-20 Last updated: 2012-01-05Bibliographically approved

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