Iron Quadrangle, Brazil: Elemental concentration determined by k0-instrumental neutron activation analysis Part I: Soil samples
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The Iron Quadrangle, Minas Gerais, Brazil, is rich in mineral occurrences and is considered one of the richest mineral-bearing regions in the world. Most investigations in this region have dealt with the determination of arsenic and mercury but so far few studies have been carried out aiming at determining other important elements. Having in mind the potential risk caused by mineral activities, this study was developed in order to assess the potential influence of the soil on foodstuffs. The soil samples were collected from three sites inside and outside the Iron Quadrangle. The samples were analyzed at the Laboratory for Neutron Activation Analysis, CDTN/CNEN by the k0-instrumental neutron activation analysis. This paper reports the elemental concentration determined in soil and emphasises the elements cited in the Brazilian environmental legislation for soil. This work also confirms the high elemental concentration of several minerals, however, it is difficult to distinguish the contamination from anthropogenic activities from the natural occurrence.
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