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Saturday, September 24, 2011

☢ Rice 500 Becquerels Radioactive Cesium 3,000 Becquerels In Soil Fukushima Nihonmatsu ☢

Story (Mainichi Japan) September 24, 2011

Fukushima finds cesium in Nihonmatsu rice, to hold more tests before shipment decision

Under a cloudy sky, Akira Sudo is seen amidst his rice paddies in Tome, Miyagi Prefecture, on Aug. 3. (Mainichi)
Under a cloudy sky, Akira Sudo is seen amidst his rice paddies in Tome, Miyagi Prefecture, on Aug. 3. (Mainichi)
The Fukushima Prefectural Government said on Sept. 23 that it had detected 500 becquerels of radioactive cesium per kilogram -- the government-set allowable limit -- in a sample of "Hitomebore" rice collected in Nihonmatsu's Obama district. It will greatly increase the number of testing locations there for a second test to decide whether to allow shipments of rice from the city.
After discovering radioactive cesium in the rice crop from the city, Nihonmatsu became the first area to be designated a "priority test area," which means the local government will increase the number of locations in the city where rice crops are tested for radioactive substances before deciding whether to allow shipments.
Early-season rice from across Fukushima Prefecture was already previously approved for shipments, and some municipalities have started shipping their regular season rice. The test results from Nihonmatsu have again stirred worries among farmers and others about effects on Fukushima products' reputation.
According to the prefectural government, 500 becquerels of radioactive cesium were detected in a rice sample collected on Sept. 12, and soil in its paddy field contained 3,000 becquerels of cesium per kilogram. Rice crops from 11 other locations in the Obama district had from undetectable amounts up to 212 becquerels of cesium.
Preliminary tests such as the one that found the problem rice in Nihonmatsu are being conducted about one week before harvesting in 370 zones covering the whole prefecture. Those municipalities where rice with 200 becquerels or more of cesium are found are designated as "priority test areas." Such areas get two testing locations per 15 hectares of land for a later second test that determines whether shipments from the zone will be allowed.
Following the Nihonmatsu test results, the Fukushima Prefectural Government plans to increase the number of testing locations there from around 40 to around 300. If rice with 500 becquerels or more cesium per kilogram is again found, shipments of all rice crops from that part of the city will be restricted.
Workers experiment with draining radioactively contaminated mud from a paddy field, left, onto a tarp-covered adjacent field in Iitate, Fukushima Prefecture, on Aug. 24. (Mainichi)
Workers experiment with draining radioactively contaminated mud from a paddy field, left, onto a tarp-covered adjacent field in Iitate, Fukushima Prefecture, on Aug. 24. (Mainichi)
Before the Nihonmatsu finding, the highest level of cesium detected in ordinary rice from Fukushima Prefecture in preliminary tests was 136 becquerels in Fukushima city's Onami district.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries estimated the transfer coefficient of cesium from soil to rice crops at 0.1 (10 percent) and banned planting rice in paddy fields with more than 5,000 becquerels of cesium per kilogram of soil. Based on these values, in theory rice from the prefecture should not contain more than 500 becquerels of cesium.

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Geiger Counters - Radiation Detection Meters - Handheld Radiation Detector

When it comes to radiation detection meters you really have a wide field of gadgets to choose from, however radiation detectors are the most common to use. First of all if you need to know what type of radiation you are looking for. There are Alpha, Beta and Gamma radiation detectors. And also there is neutron emission of nuclear radiation. And all these different types of emissions have radiation detectors for a specific type of radiation that you can buy radiation detector for. Some also measure both Alpha and Beta. Others detect Alpha, Beta and Gamma. While others let you measure Beta and Gamma radiation.

What most people have use for though are Dosimeters you can buy a handheld radiation detector pretty cheap that are good addition to a survival kit. There are different kinds that you can use that will detect radiation. There are radiation badges that will tell you when radiation become high. Workers at nuclear power plants use these to inform them of how much radiation they have been exposed to. Now also children in the Fukushima prefecture have each been given a radiation badge so they know if they are exposed to radiation. Some come in the shape of a pen that you can carry in your pocket while other are made more compact so that you can attach them to your keychain. And then you have what is called a personal radiation monitor. These are also called Dosimeters and also normally called Geiger counters. Although not all use the Geiger-Muller Tube for the radiation detection some use a semiconductor instead. These and mostly the older geiger counters seen are pretty big to carry around, so they might not be best suited for a survival situation where you only need to carry the most important things. However if you have land and want to check radiation around the property and drinking water then these are the geiger counters to get because they are very well built units.

These are the once that you normally see people use. They have different units of radiation detection, because when it comes to radiation there are many standards used. some give the measurements in Rads, while other use Sieverts. Some have the maximum radiation value for the measured radioactivity quite low but they will still give you an idea of the amount of radiation in the area. With the units ranging from between background radiation 0.001 mSv/hr all the way up to 10 Sv/h. Normally a dosimeter will measure radiation in micro siverts per hour. If you were to walk into one of the reactor units at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant you probably would get an error reading from your dosimeter because the radiation levels are so high there.

Note that some places outside the exclusion zone in Fukushima that are too radioactive for people to live in have areas where the radiation levels are above 30 Sv/h. So if you are in a area that have high radiation the radiation detectors would also there go off the scale. However Geiger counters or radiation detectors are still favored as general purpose alpha/beta/gamma portable radiation detectors and radiation detection equipment, due to their low cost and robustness. Most come with an LCD Display that show you the radioactivity in the area. Nowdays you will even get alarm sound and the possibility to connect the device to a computer. Either with a Infrared, Bluetooth or USB connection.

So if you look at the radiation detectors for sale that have this, then these radiation detection meters will allow you to make maps of contaminated areas that show where the radiation is high and low. This also will help you to see which areas are becoming more contaminated over time. With several nuclear reactors in the US and around the world located near fault zones that makes it a danger if a big earthquake would hit the area there is always a good choice to have a radiation dosimeter avaliable. I'm sure many in Fukushima would have been grateful to have dosimeters avaliable at the time of the disaster and I am sure you to would be grateful to have a geiger counter handy when you need one.