Ground based radon-222 observations and their application to atmospheric studies

W. Zahorowski*, S. D. Chambers, A. Henderson-Sellers

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this paper is to review recent trends in the appli cation of ground based radon observations to atmospheric research. In spite of over four decades of atmospheric radon monitoring, only in the past decade has the potential of this passive tracer been realised through a series of atmospheric model evaluation studies. Firstly, the key operational requirements for baseline radon detectors are briefly discussed, including lower limit of detection and response time. Then, current radon-related benchmarks for the evaluation of regional and global models are reviewed, with particular consideration given to the implications of data availability, resolution, site location and model spatial/temporal resolution. An 8-year subset of radon observations from the Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station is used to suggest new benchmarks that exploit long-term data sets. Lastly an overview is presented of a technique that uses radon to estimate regional fluxes of climatically sensitive gases, with specific examples for CO2, CH4 and N2O. Crown

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-33
Number of pages31
JournalJournal of Environmental Radioactivity
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Climate change
  • Evaluation
  • GCM
  • Radon
  • Surface-atmosphere interaction
  • Validation


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