RAD Analysis: Sediment Dating

Sediment Dating

Young sediments have an excess or “unsupported” concentration of Pb-210. Determinations of how the excess Pb-210 decreases with depth can be used to determine rates of deposition.

Radionuclide Detection Limit
Lead-210 100 pci/kg
5 Bq/kg

Maxxam measures the more sensitive Polonium-210 (Daughter of Lead-210) using alpha spectrometry.

Cs-137 Testing

Nuclear tests produced Cesium-137 that was deposited from the atmosphere. It is strongly absorbed on soil particles and has limited movement by chemical and biological processes. Most Cs-137 movement in the environment is by physical processes making Cs-137 an exceptional tracer for studying erosion and sedimentation.

Radionuclide Detection Limit*
Cesium-137 100 pci/kg
5 Bq/kg

* Dependent on the mass of the sample available.

RAD Analysis: Sediment Dating