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Additional resources for Carbon-14 in the Environment: Recommendations of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (N C R P Report)

Example text

Dissolved C02 and H2C03). 1 mmol/L in the deep ocean (Broecker and Li, 1970). The inorganic carbon contents of the ocean compartments, as shown in Fig. 1, are then 580 x 1012 kg in the surface layer, 6600 x 10'' kg in the thermocline, and 32,000 X 1012 kg in the deep ocean. The next most abundant form of carbon in the ocean is the marine detritus or dead organic matter. , 1976) provides a burden of 29 X lo1* kg of dead organic carbon in the surface layer and thermocline and 1620 x 1012 kg in the deep ocean.

This topic has been extensively discussed by Horrocks (1974) and by the NCRP (NCRP, 1976). Similarly, intricacies of the determination of counting efficiency (quench correction), solvents, and solutes, and other details of liquid scintillation counting have been extensively discussed by Horrocks (1974) and by the NCRP (1976, 1978). 5 / 5. SAMPLING AND ANALYSIS Direct Ion Mass Spectrometry The measuring methods described in the previous section depend on indirect evaluation of "C content by counting the P radiation emitted when an atom of 14Cdecays.

The isotope ratios do change slightly in going from the gaseous to the liquid phase and vice versa, but the changes are small compared to the uncertainties of estimating the consequences of radioactive decay in the plant or animal body. The decomposition on land of animal and plant materials returns C 0 2 to the atmosphere a t a rate approximately equal to the fixation rate of C 0 2 by the terrestrial biosphere. However, there is a delay time due to the fixation of C 0 2 in metabolic pools of materials with a low turnover rate such as forests and humus.

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