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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 35 No. 2, p. 199-201
    Received: Sept 8, 1970
    Accepted: Oct 23, 1970

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208Tl and 24Na Gamma Sources for Identifying Soil Water Tagged with Deuterium1

  1. R. H. Hawkins,
  2. R. F. Overman and
  3. J. C. Corey2



In situ tracing of soil water movement with the D2O-24Na method has been limited by the need to reactivate the 24Na gamma source frequently (half-life of 15 hours) in a nuclear reactor. Our laboratory study showed 208Tl produced the same neutron count rates from vials of D2O in dry and moist soil as did 24Na. The 1.9-year effective half-life of 208Tl in equilibrium with its parent nuclide 228Th is a significant advantage of 208Tl over 24Na. Recent commercial availability of 208Tl sources now makes in situ D2O tracing of soil water feasible for investigators not having access to a nuclear reactor.

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