The distribution of 137Cs, plutonium and americium in sheep

G. J. Ham, John Harrison, D. S. Popplewell, E. J.C. Curtis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Radiochemical measurements on tissues taken from sheep from the Cumbrian and Lancashire coast have given data which allow the tissue distribution and body content of plutonium isotopes, americium-241 and caesium-137 to be calculated. The data are particularly useful as the concentrations in lung confirm that for these animals the main route of intake is from the diet and not from inhalation. Plutonium and americium concentrate in the liver and skeleton. Caesium-137 was, as expected, found mainly in the meat of the animals. Additionally a controlled feeding experiment has been conducted to determine the gastrointestinal absorption of plutonium and americium from contaminated vegetation. A value of 0.01% for plutonium and 0.005% for americium was determined.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-244
Number of pages10
JournalScience of the Total Environment, The
Issue numberC
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1989


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