Benchmarking Calibration for Low-Level Gamma Spectrometric Measurements of Environmental Samples

Closed for proposals

Project Type

Coordinated Research Project

Project Code

K41011

CRP

1471

Approved Date

19 November 2007

Status

3 - Active - Ongoing

Start Date

15 August 2008

Expected End Date

14 August 2013

Completed Date

26 November 2013

Participating Countries

Australia
Bangladesh
Belgium
Cuba
France
Germany
Greece
Nigeria
Romania
Slovenia
Ukraine

Description

Development of improved calibration methods and packages is basic to improving the application of gamma spectrometry in environmental radioactivity and radiotracer studies, and to improving comparability of results obtained from different radioanalytical laboratories around the world. The proposed CRP will assist Member State laboratories through development of analytical methodologies and software. Typically, calibrations are carried out using either of two broad approaches: the use of specially prepared standards or by computational means. The computational approach has considerable advantages, especially in terms of the costs which otherwise arise in standard preparation, but there are difficulties which will generally lead to a greater uncertainty in the final calculated efficiencies. Through the CRP the various approaches to calibration will be developed in a complementary way, with careful attention to intercomparability and validation by means of interlaboratory comparison exercises. It is expected that new methods, procedures and software tools of general use to IAEA Member State laboratories will be developed to help laboratories to optimize their detector setup and calibration systems, and to calibrate their systems once set up. The results will be distributed to all countries having an interest in application of gamma spectrometry for environmental radioactivity studies.

Objectives

The CRP overall objective is to assist Member States to co-ordinate the development of validated calibration methods relying on combined experimental and modelling approaches and to establish traceability of results through comprehensive quantification of measurement uncertainties associated with low-level gamma-ray spectrometric analysis of environmental samples.

Specific objectives

To compile and validate software tools, detailed procedures and datasets for calibration of general use to the IAEA Member States laboratories.

To develop improved calibration and efficiency determination methods for widely used types of HPGe detectors, using classical, semi-empirical and computational approaches.

To develop methods to validate and improve the inter-comparability of results obtained with different calibration approaches.

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