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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2016, Article ID 8726260, 5 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/8726260
Research Article

Elemental Analysis and Natural Radioactivity Levels of Clay by Gamma Ray Spectrometer and Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis

1Physics Department, Faculty of Science, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 21589, Saudi Arabia
2Physics Department, Faculty of Science, Qassim University, Buraydah 51452, Saudi Arabia

Received 13 February 2016; Accepted 29 March 2016

Academic Editor: Alejandro Clausse

Copyright © 2016 W. R. Alharbi and A. El-Taher. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Due to increased global demand for clay, the present work involves the use of INAA for elemental analysis and pollutants concentration in clay. The samples were collected from Aswan in South Egypt. The samples were irradiated using the thermal neutrons “at the TRIGA Mainz research reactor” and at a neutron flux “of 7 × 10 n/cm s”. Twenty-six elements quantitatively and qualitatively were specified for the first time upon studying the samples. The elements determined are U, Th, Ta, Hf, Lu, Eu, Ce, Ba, Sn, Nb, Rb, Zn, Co, Fe, Cr, Sc, Sm, La, Yb, As, Ga, K, Mn, Na, Ti, and Mg. The concentrations of natural radionuclides 232Th, 226Ra, and 40K were also calculated. Based on these concentrations, to estimate the exposure risk for using clay as raw materials in building materials, the radiation hazard indices such as radium equivalent activities, effective doses rate, and the external hazard indices have been computed. The obtained results were compared with analogous studies carried out in other countries and with the UNSCEAR reports.