Long-term and heavy applications of phosphatic fertilizers may result in an increase of uranium (U), thorium (Th), and lanthanoids (La to Lu in atomic number) levels in soils because phosphate rock usually contains relatively high amounts of these elements. The purpose of this paper is to clarify the behavior and distribution of U, Th, and lanthanoids in paddy fields. Under flooded conditions, virtually all of the water soluble U, Th, and lanthanoids in the fertilizers were adsorbed by paddy soils after the application. The runoff and deep percolation of these elements from paddy fields to river water and groundwater were found to be negligible. It is calculated that when 600 kg of calcium superphosphate containing 85.2 mg/kg of U, is added annually per hectare, the amount of U added to the soil comes to be 49 g per hectare per year. The transfer factors of U, Th, and lanthanoids from soil to unhusked rice were in the range of 2.2×10-5 (Nd) -2.9×10-4 (Th) . The concentration of U in various organs of rice plant was lower than that of Th.
Radon-222 in ground water was measured in Tokyo and the vicinity. Radon concentrations were in the range of 0-45 Bq/l. The average concentration was 8±11 Bq/l, and was equivalent to the concentration level of ground water in sedimentary soil. Typical concentrations were 3 Bq/l in alluvial low land, 6 Bq/l in diluvial upland, 12 Bq/l in alluvial fan on Musashino platform, 21 Bq/l along Tachikawa fault, and 16Bq/l along Arakawa fault.
Collective dose equivalent and population dose from occupational exposures in Japan, 1988 were estimated on the basis of a nationwide survey. The survey was conducted on annual collective dose equivalents by sex, age group and type of radiation work for about 0.21 million worker except for the workers in nuclear power stations. The data on the workers in nuclear power stations were obtained from the official report of the Japan Nuclear Safety Commission. The total number of workers including nuclear power stations was estimated to be about 0.26 million. Radiation works were subdivided as follows: medical works including dental; monatomic energy industry; research and education; atomic energy industry and nuclear power station. For the determination of effective dose equivalent and population dose, organ or tissue doses were measured with a phantom experiment. The resultant doses were compared with the doses previously calculated using a chord length technique and with data from ICRP publications. The annual collective effective dose equivalent were estimated to be about 21.94 person·Sv for medical workers, 7.73 person·Sv for industrial workers, 0.75 person·Sv for research and educational workers, 2.48 person·Sv for atomic energy industry and 84.4 person·Sv for workers in nuclear power station, respectively. The population doses were calculated to be about 1.07 Sv for genetically significant dose, 0.89 Sv for leukemia significant dose and 0.42 Sv for malignant significant dose, respectively. The population risks were estimated using these population doses.
In order to estimate the availability of zeolite, one of the inorganic ion exchangers, as an eliminator for the incorporated radionuclides, wholebody retention of intraperitoneally administrated54Mn and65Zn was measured in mice fed a zeolite-added diet at 10 per cent. Wholebody retention of54Mn and65Zn was decreased significantly faster than control, and the biological half-life of them was also reduced to 11.3 and 12.7 days, respectively, from 14.1 and 16.8 days in controls. The results suggest that oral administration of zeolite is effective to eliminate the incorporated54Mn and65Zn, and if it is used in combination with the chelation therapy of DTPA, it will be more effective.