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Grad Student Ryan Pavlovsky Measures and Analyzes Radiation in Half Moon Bay

Friday, Feb 28th 2014

Graduate student, Ryan Pavlovsky, and Professor Kai Vetter went out to Half Moon Bay recently to measure radiation levels following some recent widely publicized measurements indicating increased radiation levels on a beach north of the town of Half Moon Bay. In addition to a simple Geiger counter they took a state-of-the art, high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometer to find out what is causing the variations of the radiation levels. Ryan's report can be read here. As the main outcome, he can explain the increased radiation levels by the increased concentration of naturally occurring thorium and uranium in the sand. No radiation that can be attributed to the releases from Fukushima is observed. Detailed sand measurements are still ongoing. Stay tuned.