Comparison of two different methods for gross alpha and beta activity determination in water samples
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Measurement of the gross alpha and beta activity concentrations in various matrices is suitable as a preliminary screening procedure to determine whether further analysis related to specific radionuclide is necessary. In Serbia, according to current regulations, radioactivity concentrations in drinking water for gross alpha and gross beta should be LT 0.5 and LT 1.0 Bq L-1, respectively. The generally accepted methods for gross alpha and beta activity analysis of drinking water in different countries are: EPA 900.0 and ISO methods (ISO 9696, water quality - measurement of gross alpha activity in non-saline water - thick source method, and ISO 9697, water quality - measurement of gross beta activity in non-saline water). This paper describes comparison of preparations and measurement gross alpha and beta activity in bottled mineral waters as well as in tap waters in Serbia using two methods: EPA 900.0 with and without ash, and ISO methods. Concentration of total dissolved solids (TDS) i...n investigated water samples was determined. Based on obtained TDS, certain volume was evaporated. The instrumentation used to count the gross alpha and gross beta activities for both methods is alpha/beta low level proportional counter Thermo Eberline FHT 770 T.