- A group of Japanese researchers has drawn up an electronic map which shows changing radiation levels at about 2,200 locations in a 5-year period.
- The map was made by a research group led by Professor Isao Tanihata at Osaka University's Research Center for Nuclear Physics.
- The group calculated estimated radiation levels at each of about 2,200 points over the next 5 years based on data released by the education and science ministry.
- Most of the locations are in Fukushima Prefecture, where a nuclear accident was triggered in March by the massive earthquake and tsunami.
- The group took into account the level of radioactive cesium, which drops as time passes.
- By using Google Earth services, the group forecast the level at individual sites and point of time with a bar graph. Possible changes in level naturally caused by rain and wind and the decontamination effort are not included.
- For example, the map shows that a radiation level of 4.36 microsieverts per hour detected in June in Kawamata Town about 30 kilometers northwest of the troubled plant will fall to 1.75 microsieverts 5 years later.
- Professor Tanihata hopes that the map will help state and local authorities to work out a specific plan to decontaminate areas to get people to return to their hometowns.
- The map will be made public at the research center's Website on Monday.
Sunday, September 18, 2011 14:59 +0900 (JST)
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