Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 14, pp 13975–13987 | Cite as

Radionuclide uptake and dose assessment of 14 herbaceous species from the east-Ural radioactive trace area using the ERICA Tool

  • Elina M. Karimullina
  • Lyudmila N. Mikhailovskaya
  • Elena V. Antonova
  • Vera N. Pozolotina
Research Article


The evaluation of radiation exposure in 14 species of herbaceous plants from the East-Ural Radioactive Trace (EURT) zone was performed, using the ERICA Tool, v. 1.2. Recent (up to 2015) levels of radionuclide activity concentration were measured in soil and vegetative plant mass. 239,240Pu content was used for the first time to estimate external dose rates for herbaceous plant species along the pollution gradient. In addition, a new approach to assessing the geometry of objects was adopted, including not only aboveground but also underground plant organs. This improved approach to the evaluation of radiation exposure confirms previous findings that herbaceous plant populations currently exist under low-level chronic exposure in the EURT area. This reassessment based on new data suggests a 48–977-fold increase in the total dose rate per plant organism at the most polluted site compared to background areas. The highest capacity for the transfer of 90Sr and 137Cs was observed in Taraxacum officinale and Plantago major. In these species, the total dose rate per plant exceeded 150 μGy h−1 due to 90Sr + 137Cs + 239,240Pu radionuclide anthropogenic pollution in the EURT zone. All estimated total dose rates per plant were below the dose rate screening value of 400 μGy h−1.


Kyshtym accident 90Sr 137Cs 239,240Pu Dose assessment CR 


Funding information

This study was performed within the frameworks of state contract with the Institute of Plant and Animal Ecology, Ural Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, and partly supported by the Program of UB RAS (projects 15-2-4-21, 18-4-4-9).

Supplementary material

11356_2018_1544_MOESM1_ESM.docx (43 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 43 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elina M. Karimullina
    • 1
  • Lyudmila N. Mikhailovskaya
    • 2
  • Elena V. Antonova
    • 1
  • Vera N. Pozolotina
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Population Radiobiology, Institute of Plant and Animal EcologyUral Branch of the Russian Academy of SciencesEkaterinburgRussian Federation
  2. 2.Laboratory of Common Radioecology, Institute of Plant and Animal EcologyUral Branch of the Russian Academy of SciencesEkaterinburgRussian Federation

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