, Volume 248, Issue 1, pp 211-216

IAEA reference materials for quality assurance of marine radioactivity measurements

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Abstract

The IAEA's Marine Environment Laboratory has been assisting laboratories in Analytical Quality Control Services (AQCS) for the analysis of radionuclides in the marine environment since the early seventies. AQCS through world-wide and regional intercomparison exercises and the provision of reference methods and reference materials (RM) have been recognized as an important component of quality assurance/quality control. A total of 43 intercomparison exercises were organized and 37 RM were produced for marine radioactivity studies. All important marine matrices were covered, e.g., seawater, marine sediments of different chemical compositions, fish, shellfish and seaplants. RM were prepared from samples collected at contaminated sites (e.g., the Irish Sea, the Baltic Sea, the Arabian Sea, Mururoa and Bikini Atolls, etc.) as well as from sites affected only by global fallout (e.g., the Pacific Ocean). Available RM are listed in the IAEA biennial catalogue and can be purchased at a minimal price. An overview of prepared RM for radionuclides in marine matrices is presented and discussed in more detail.