Lead isotopes as seepage indicators around a uranium tailings dam

B. L. Gulson, K. J. Mizon, M. J. Korsch, B. N. Noller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Lead isotope ratios and lead concentrations have been measured in water from 26 bores around the Ranger uranium tailings dam, Northern Territory, Australia, and from the dam itself to determine possible migration of lead derived from the radioactive decay of uranium. Lead isotope compositions have also been measured for the particulates retained on selected filters. The concentration of lead in the bore waters is extremely low (usually <1 ppb). The 206Pb/204Pb ratio measured in the bore waters differs by more than a factor of 100 from that in the tailings dam and shows no evidence of lead derived from a significant uranium accumulation. It may be possible to distinguish between lead from the tailings dam and that derived from a nearby uranium ore body.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)290-294
Number of pages5
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1989
Externally publishedYes


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