Detailed effects of particle size and surface area on 222Rn emanation of a phosphate rock

Gustavo Haquin, Zohar Yungrais, Danielle Ilzycer, Hovav Zafrir, Noam Weisbrod

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The dependency of radon emanation on soil texture was investigated using the closed chamber method. Ground phosphate rock with a large specific surface area was analyzed, and the presence of inner pores, as well as a high degree of roughness and heterogeneity in the phosphate particles, was found. The average radon emanation of the dry phosphate was 0.145 ± 0.016. The emanation coefficient was highest (0.169 ± 0.019) for the smallest particles (<25 μm), decreasing to a constant value (0.091 ± 0.014) for the larger particles (>210 μm). The reduction rate followed an inverse power law. As expected, a linear dependence between the emanation coefficient and the specific surface area was found, being lower than predicted for the large specific surface area. This was most likely due to an increase in the embedding effect of radon atoms in adjacent grains separated by micropores. Results indicate that knowledge of grain radium distribution is crucial to making accurate emanation predictions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-81
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Environmental Radioactivity
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • Particle size distribution
  • Radium distribution
  • Radon emanation
  • Recoil
  • Specific surface area

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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