United States
Environmental Protection
Agency
Office of Radiation and
Indoor Air
Washington, DC 20460
EPA-402-R-02-007
November 2002
Annual Water Sampling and
Analysis, Calendar Year 2002;
    SHOAL Test Site Area
    FAULTLESS Test Site Area
    RULISON Test Site Area
    RIO BLANCO Test Site Area
    GASBUGGY Test Site Area
    GNOME Test Site Area

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Annual Water Sampling and
Analysis, Calendar Year 2002
SHOAL Test Site Area
FAULTLESS Test Site Area
RULISON Test Site Area
RIO BLANCO Test Site Area
GASBUGGY Test Site Area
GNOME Test Site Area
by
Max G. Davis
Terry L. Mauck
Prepared for the U.S. Department of Energy
under futeragency Agreement
DE-AI08-96NVl1969
RADIATION AND INDOOR ENVIRONMENTS NATIONAL LABORATORY
OFFICE OF RADIATION AND INDOOR AIR
U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
P.O. BOX 98517
LAS VEGAS, NV 89193-8517

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NOTICE
The information in this document has been funded wholly or in part by the United States
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) through Interagency Agreement (IAG) DE-AI08-96 NV
11969 from the United States Department of Energy (DOE). This document has been subjected
to the Agency's peer and administrative reviews, and it has been approved for publication as an
EP A document. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute
endorsement or recommendation for use.
11

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ABSTRACT
The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, Radiation and Indoor Environments National
Laboratory in Las Vegas, Nevada (R&IE), operates the radiological surveillance program
surrounding the Nevada Test Site (NTS) and, in addition, monitors former nuclear test areas in
Alaska, Colorado, Mississippi, Nevada, and New Mexico, each year under the Long Term
Hydrological Monitoring Program (LTHMP). The LTHMP is designed to detect residual man-
made radionuclides in surface and ground water resulting from underground nuclear test activities.
This report describes the sampling and analysis of water samples collected from six former
nuclear test sites in three western states during 2002; Projects Shoal and Faultless in Nevada;
Projects Rulison and Rio Blanco in Colorado; and Projects Gasbuggy and Gnome in New
Mexico. Monitoring results for Alaska and Mississippi are reported separately.
Radiological results for 2002 are consistent with results from previous years. No increase was
seen in either tritium concentrations or gamma-ray emitting radionuclides at any site. Tritium
levels at the sites are generally decreasing or stable and are well below the 20,000 pCiIL
guideline specified in the National Primary Drinking Water Regulations; Radionuclides; Final
Rule (40CFR9/141/142), with the exception of samples from several deep wells adjacent to the
nuclear cavity at the Gnome site. As in previous years, the highest tritium value recorded for any
sample, 3.79 x 107 pCi/L, was from one of these wells, Well DD-I (Project Gnome).
111

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IV

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CONTENTS
Page
Notice. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1'1'
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Abstract. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iii

Figures and Tables. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vi
Acronyms and Abbreviations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. vii
Acknowledgments. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . viii
1.0 Introduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 1
2.0 Sample Analysis. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 1

2.1 Sampling at Project SHOAL, Nevada. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 2
2.1.1 Sample Collection. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 2
2.1.2 Water Analysis Results. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 4
2.1.3 Conclusions................................................. 4
2.2 Sampling at Project FAULTLESS, Nevada. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 5
2.2.1 Sample Collection. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 5
2.2.2 Water Analysis Results. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 5

2.2.3 Conclusions................................................. 5

2.3 Sampling at Project RULISON, Colorado. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 7
2.3.1 Sample Collection. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 7
2.3.2 Water Analysis Results. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 9

2.3.3 Conclusions........................ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 10

2.4 Sampling at Project RIO BLANCO, Colorado. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 10
2.4.1 Sample Collection. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 10
2.4.2 Water Analysis Results. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 10
2.4.3 Conclusions................................................ 10
2.5 Sampling at Project GASBUGGY, New Mexico. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 13
2.5.1 Sample Collection. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 13
2.5.2 Water Analysis Results. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 13

2.5.3 Conclusions................................................ 13

2.6 Sampling at Project GNOME, New Mexico. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 15
2.6.1 Sample Collection. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 16
2.6.2 Water Analysis Results. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 16
2.6.3 Conclusions................................................ 16
References. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 19

Glossary of Terms. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 20

Appendix A [[[ 21


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FIGURES
Page
1. Project SHOAL sampling locations for February 2002 .............................. 3
2. Project FAULTLESS sampling locations for March 2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 6
3. Project RULISON sampling locations for May 2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 8
4. Project RIO BLANCO sampling locations for May 2002 ........................... 11
5. Project GASBUGGY sampling locations for June 2002 ............................ 14
6. Project GNOME sampling locations for June 2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 17
TABLES
Page
1. Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the SHOAL Site - February 2002 ....... 4
2. Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the FAULTLESS Site - March 2002 ..... 7
3. Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the RULISON Site - May 2002 ......... 9
4. Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the RIO BLANCO Site - May 2002 .... 12
5. Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the GASBUGGY Site - June 2002 ..... 15
6. Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the GNOME Site - June 2002 ......... 18
VI

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ABC
DOE
EPA
DCG
g
3H+
3H
HpGe
IAG
keV
kg
KT
LTHMP
L
m
mm
MDA
MDC
MeV
mL
MT
ORIA
pCi/L
PHS
R&IE
SGZ
USGS
ITC
ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS
U.S. Atomic Energy Commission
U.S. Department of Energy
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Derived Concentration Guide (20,000 pCiIL for Tritium in Drinking Water)
gram
Enriched Tritium
Tritium
high purity germanium gamma detector
Interagency Agreement
kilo electron volts (one thousand electron volts)
kilogram, 1000 grams
kiloton (one thousand tons TNT equivalent)
Long-Term Hydrological Monitoring Program
liter
meter
minute
minimum detectable activity
minimum detectable concentration
one million electron volts
milliliter (one thousandth of a liter)
megaton (one million tons TNT equivalent)
Office of Radiation and Indoor Air
picocuries per liter = 10-12 curies per liter = 1/1,000,000,000,000 curies per liter
U.S. Public Health Service
Radiation and Indoor Environments National Laboratory, Las Vegas, NV
surface ground zero
U.S. Geological Survey
International Technology Corporation
VB

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
The external peer review was provided by Vernon Hodge, Ph.D., Chemistry, University of
Nevada, Las Vegas. In addition, the authors would like to acknowledge Rich Hotard, Ph.D. and
George Dilbeck, Ph.D., as internal reviewers, and the staff of the hydrological monitoring team,
EP A, for their dedication to quality and tireless work in the execution of the sampling and
laboratory analysis effort.
Vlll

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1.0 INTRODUCTION
Under an Interagency Agreement with the Department of Energy (DOE), the Radiation & Indoor
Environments National Laboratory (R&IE), Office of Radiation and Indoor Air (ORIA), EP A,
located in Las Vegas, NV, conducts a Long-Term Hydrological Monitoring Program (LTHMP) to
measure radioactivity concentrations in water sources near the sites of former underground
nuclear explosions. The results of the LTHMP provide assurance that radioactive materials from
the tests have not migrated into drinking water supplies. This report presents the results for the
samples collected in February, March, May, and June of 2002, around the following test site
areas:
.
.
.
.
.
.
Project SHOAL Test Site, Churchill County, Nevada
Project FAULTLESS Test Site, Nye County, Nevada
Project RULISON Test Site, Garfield County, Colorado
Project RIO BLANCO Test Site, Rio Blanco County, Colorado
Project GASBUGGY Test Site, Rio Arriba County, New Mexico
Project GNOME Test Site, Eddy County, New Mexico
2.0 Sample Analysis
Radiochemical laboratory procedures used to analyze the samples collected for this report are
summarized in R&IE's SOPs (see Appendix A and B). These include standard methods to
identify natural and man-made gamma-emitting radionuclides, tritium, plutonium, strontium, and
uranium in water samples. Two types of tritium analyses were performed; conventional and
electrolytic enrichment. The enrichment method lowers the MDC from approximately 300 pCi/L
to 5 pCi/L. An upper limit of activity of 700 - 800 pCi/L has been established for the tritium
enrichment method because sample cross contamination becomes a problem at higher levels.
It has been decided by EP A, that a maximum of 25 percent of all samples collected would be
analyzed by the low-level enrichment method. This decision was based on the time required for
analysis and an assessment of past results. Under the current sampling and analysis protocol for
the site, all samples are initially screened for tritium activity by the conventional method, and
selected samples are enriched. At this time, only sampling locations that are in a position to show
migration are selected for enrichment.
Sufficient sample is collected from new sampling locations to perform all routine analyses, and a
full-suite of other radiochemical determinations including assays for strontium, plutonium, and
uranIUm.
1

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Summary of Analytical Procedures
Type of
Analysis
Analytical
Eqnipment
Connting
Period (Min)
Analytical
Procedures
Size of
Sample
Approximate
Detection Limit"
HpGe
Gammab
HpGe detector
calibrated at 0.5 keV/
channel (0.04 to 2 MeV
range) individual detector.
Efficiencies ranging from
15 to 35%.
-150
Radionuc1ide concen-
tration quantified from
gamma spectral data
by online computer
program.
3.5 L
Varies with radionuc1ides
and detector used, if
counted to a MDC of
approx. 5 pCiIL for l37Cs.
3H
Automatic liquid
scintillation counter
300
Sample prepared by
distillation.
30 - 40 mL 300 to 700 pCi/L
3H+ Automatic liquid
Enrichment scintillation counter
300
Sample concentrated
by electrolysis following
distillation.
250 mL c 5 pCi/L
a The detection limit is defined as the smallest amount of radioactivity that can be reliably
detected, i.e., probability of Type I and Type II error at 5 percent each (DOE 1981).
b Gamma spectrometry using a high purity intrinsic germanium (HpGe) detector.
C Sample distilled, then concentrated to - 5 mL by electrolysis.
2.1 Sampling at Project SHOAL, Nevada
History
Project SHOAL, a 12-KT nuclear test emplaced at 365 m (1,204 ft), was conducted on
October 26, 1963, in a sparsely populated area near Frenchman Station, Nevada, 28 miles
southeast of Fallon, Nevada. The test, a part of the Vela Uniform Program, was designed to
investigate detection of a nuclear detonation in an active earthquake zone. The working point was
in granite and no surface crater was created. The effluent released during drillback was detected
onsite only and consisted of 110 curies of l3lXe and 133Xe, and less than 1.0 curie of 1311.
2.1.1 Sample Collection
Samples were collected on February 11-16,2002. The sampling locations are shown in Figure 1.
All of the locations were sampled with the exception of Well H - 3. The pump was inoperable.
The routine sampling locations included one spring, two windmills, and eleven wells of varying
depths. At least one location, Well HS-l, should intercept radioactivity migrating from the test
cavity, if it occurs (Chapman and Hokett 1991).
2

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Fallon
,
,
,
(J..:. ,
o~ ,
"0 ,
~ ,
~
5
. HS-1
Hunt's Station
.
-----
,
,
,
, CHURCHILL COUNTY
-------------------------------_1
MINERAL COUNTY
To Scheall. Mine
I
N
95
To Las Vegas
LOCATION MAP
o Surface Ground Zero
. Water Sampling Locations
Map is not to scale
Figure 1. Project SHOAL sampling locations for February 2002.
3

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2.1.2 Water Analysis Results
Gamma-ray spectral analysis results indicated that no man-made gamma-ray emitting
radionuclides were present in any samples above the MDC. Tritium concentrations at all
locations except for one were below the MDC. The only sampling location that had a tritium
concentration above the MDC was Well HC-4 of 259 :t 6.9 pCiIL (see Table 1, below).
2.1.3 Conclusions
No radioactive materials attributable to the SHOAL nuclear test were detected in samples
collected in the onsite and offsite areas during 2002.
A I . R
It ~
Wt
S
I
C II t d t th SHOAL S't
Fb
Y 2002
na YS1S esu S or a er amples 0 ec e a  e 1 e - e ruar 
       TABLE 1      
     , ,',  .. '.'         
';u ""     " ',;" :' "       
          u 
,Sarpple '"    Collection ' Enriched Tritium,   Tritium(a)     , Gamm~ Sp~ctrotnetry
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2.2 Sampling at Project FAULTLESS, Nevada
History
Project FAULTLESS was a "calibration test" conducted on January 19, 1968, in a sparsely
populated area near Blue Jay Maintenance Station, Nevada. The test had a yield of less than 1 MT
and was designed to test the behavior of seismic waves and to determine the usefulness of the site
for high-yield tests. The emplacement depth was 975 m (3,200 ft). A surface crater was formed,
but as an irregular block along local faults rather than as a saucer-shaped depression. The area is
characterized by basin and range topography, with alluvium overlying tuffaceous sediments. The
working point of the test was in tuff. The groundwater flow is generally from the highlands to the
valley and through the valley to Twin Springs Ranch and Railroad Valley (Chapman and Hokett,
1991 ).
2.2.1 Sample Collection
Sampling was conducted on March 11-13, 2002. Sampling locations are shown in Figure 2. They
include two springs and seven wells of varying depths. All sampling locations were collected
with the exception of HTH-2. The pump is inoperable and will be replaced prior to the next
sampling in 2003.
At least two wells (HTH-l and HTH-2) are positioned to intercept migration from the test cavity,
should it occur (Chapman and Hokett, 1991). All samples yielded negligible gamma activity.
Enriched tritium concentrations except for one were less than the MDC and less than 0.02 percent
of the DCG. These results were all consistent with results obtained in previous years. The
consistently below-MDC results for tritium indicate that, to date, migration into the sampled wells
has not taken place and no event-related radioactivity has entered area drinking water supplies.
2.2.2 Water Analysis Results
All gamma-ray spectral analysis results indicated that no man-made gamma-ray emitting
radionuclides were present above MDC. Tritium concentrations at all the locations except for one
were below the MDC. The only sampling location that had a tritium concentration above the
MDC was a new sampling location at Tybo which was 31 :t 4.0 pCi/L (see Table 2, page 7).
2.2.3 Conclusions
Tritium concentrations in water samples collected onsite and offsite are consistent with those of
past studies at the FAULTLESS site. No radioactive materials attributable to the FAULTLESS
test were detected in samples collected in the offsite areas. All samples were analyzed for the
presence of gamma-ray emitting radionuc1ides.
5

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Moore Station
/
0---/

:-HTH ~
. \
IHTH1 \
I
I
I
/
",
A1./ Six Mile Well
;; / ,
; I ,
;-,- ;; , I
- ,--, ; I \
'" ;; I \
'L ; I \
Hot Creek I oJ- - - - - - - r - - \
Ranch Spring I I \
I I \
~ ilJim Bias'.... - --
-------.. Well
I Blue Jay
, Springs
,
Tybo Well ,

- - - - - -- -III. - - - - -I- - - - - ... - .... -
--""-....
~ Tonopah
6
.Blue Jay
Maintenance
\ Station
\
\
\
\
\
\
\
I
T . S. I
Win pnngs,
Ranch . ~
~
N
o Surface Ground Zero
. Water Sampling Locations
. Not a Sampling Location
Map Is not to scale
NYE
COUNTY
LOCATION MAP
Figure 2. Project FAULTLESS sampling locations for March 2002.
6

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Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the FAULTLESS Site - March 2002
       .
   TABLE 2     
Sample Collection Enriched Tritium(a) TritiumCa)  Gamma SpectrometryCb)
Location Date pCiIL + 2 SD (MDC) pC ilL + 2 SD (MDC) pCiIL (MDC)
Hot Creek Ranch 3/12/02   6.3 :t 129 (212) ND (4.0)
Blue Jay Springs 3/12/02   -19:t 128 (212) ND (4.3)
Jim Bias Well 3/12/02     Not Sampled 
Blue Jay Maint 3/12/02   2.1 :t 129 (212) ND (5.0)
Station      
Well HTH-1 3/13/02 -2.1 :t 3.5a (5.8)   ND (4.7)
Well HTH-2 3/12/02     Not Sampled 
Site C Base Camp 3/12/02   83 :t 130 (212) ND (4.8)
Six Mile Well 3/11/02   -.70:t 127 (212) ND (5.0)
Tybo Well 3/12/02 31 :t 4.0 (5.7)   ND (1.8)
Twin Springs 3/11/02 -1.9 :t 4.0a (6.7)   ND (4.4)
Ranch       
(a) Indicate results are less than MDC (enriched or conventional method).
(b) Value in parenthesis represents 137CS MDC (pCi/L).
ND Non-detected.
2.3 Sampling at Project RULISON, Colorado
History
Co-sponsored by the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) and Austral Oil Company under the
Plowshare Program, Project RULISON was designed to stimulate natural gas recovery in the
Mesa Verde formation. The test, conducted near Grand Valley, Colorado, on September 10,
1969, consisted of a 40-KT nuclear explosive emplaced at a depth of 2,568 m (8,425 ft).
Production testing began in 1970 and was completed in April 1971. Cleanup was initiated in
1972, and the wells were plugged in 1976. Some surface contamination resulted from
decontamination of drilling equipment and fallout from gas flaring. Contaminated soil was
removed during the cleanup operations.
2.3.1 Sample Collection
Sampling was conducted on May 15,2002, from all sampling locations at Grand Valley and
Rulison, Colorado. Routine sampling locations are shown in Figure 3. Sampling included the
Grand Valley municipal drinking water supply springs, water supply wells for five local ranches,
and two sites in the vicinity of surface ground zero (SGZ), including one test well and two
surface-discharge springs. The three wells (RU-1, RU-2 and RU-3) located at SGZ, were plugged
in 2001, so no sample was taken in 2002.
7

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@)
I
I
I
/
,-,,;
Douglas K. Sauter Potter Ranch I" -
Ranch - /
Grand Valley Rulison. ..J.. /
,.- --;
City Springs , , I
--- ,
.f - - - - - ~ Tim Jacobs Ranch
I , .Patrick Me Carty
,I \
,.II! I .\ Battlement Creek
. ~ CER.
Dam~~~~dner Test Well '. Spring 300 yds
.. NofGZ
.. .Spring 500 ft
EofGZ
70
.O~
, / (j~
. ~~~
~
(::l~~
~
N
. Surface Ground Zero
I Water Sampling Locations
. . . Unpaved Road
LOCATION MAP
Map is not to scale
Figure 3. Project RULISON sampling locations for May 2002.
8

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2.3.2 Water Analysis Results
Tritium has never been observed in measurable concentrations in the Grand Valley City Springs.
All of the remaining sampling sites show detectable levels of tritium, which have generally
exhibited a stable or decreasing trend over the last two decades. The range of tritium activity in
2002, was from 23.5 :t 3.9 pCi/L at the Spring 300 yds N. of GZ to 42:t 4.8 pCi/L at Potter Ranch
(see Table 3). All enriched values were less than 0.25 percent of the DCG (20,000 pCi/L). The
detectable tritium activities are consistent with values found in current precipitation and, perhaps,
a small residual component remaining from clean-up activities at the site. This is supported by
Desert Research Institute analysis, which indicates that most of the sampling locations at the
RULISON site are shallow, drawing water from the surficial aquifer, and therefore, unlikely to
become contaminated by radionuclide migration from the Project RULISON cavity (Chapman and
Hokett 1991).
A
I . R
It ~
Wt
S
I
C II t d
th RULISON S.t
M
2002
na YS1S esu S or a er amp es 0 ec e at e I e - ay  
       TABLE 3     
     ? <>       
. Sample   Collection. ...EnrichedTritium  . Tritium(a) . . Gamnia 
. Location   Date. .pCiIL:!:;:2 SD (MD~). pCiIL:t 2SD(MDC)  Spectrometry(b).
     .     .... pCiIL CMJ)C)
Battlement Creek 5/15/02     77 :t 138 (225)  ND (5.0)
City Springs  5/15/02     63 :t 137 (225)  ND (4.5)
Daniel Gardner  5/15/02     158 :t 139 (225)  ND (4.9)
CER Test Well  5/15/02     39 :t 137 (225)  ND (4.4)
Patrick McCarty 5/15/02     193:t 140 (225)  ND (4.7)
Potter Ranch  5/15/02 42 :t 4.8 (6.6)    ND (5.0)
Douglas Sauter  5/15/02 35 :t 4.2 (5.8)    ND (4.6)
Tim Jacobs  5/15/02     53 :t 137 (225)  ND (1.6)
Spring 300 yds  5/15/02 23.5 :t 3.9 (5.7)    ND (4.2)
N. of GZ             
Spring 500 ft  5/15/02 24 :t 4.5 (6.7)    ND (1.9)
E. of GZ             
Well RU-1   5/15/02        Well Plugged
Well RU-2  5/15/02        Well Plugged
Well RU-3  5/15/02        Well Plugged
(a) Indicate results are less than MDC (ennched or conventIOnal method).
(b) Value in parenthesis represents 137Cs MDC (pCiIL).
ND Non-detected.
9

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2.3.3 Conclusions
Tritium concentrations in water samples collected onsite and offsite are consIstent with those of
past studies at the RULISON Test Site. In general, the current level of tritium in shallow wells at
the RULISON site cannot be distinguished from the rain-out of naturally produced tritium
augmented by, perhaps, a small amount of residual global "fallout tritium" remaining from
nuclear testing in the 1950s and 1960s. All routine samples were analyzed for presence of
gamma-ray emitting radionuclides.
2.4 Sampling at Project RIO BLANCO, Colorado
History
Project RIO BLANCO ajoint government-industry test designed to stimulate natural gas flow was
conducted under the Plowshare Program. The test was conducted on May 17, 1973, at a location
between Rifle and Meeker Colorado. Three explosives with a total yield of 99 KT were emplaced
at 1,780, 1,920, and 2,040 m (5,840,6,299, and 6,693 ft) depths in the Ft. Union and Mesa Verde
formations. Production testing continued until 1976 when cleanup and restoration activities were
completed. Tritiated water produced during testing was injected to 1,710 m (5,610 ft) in a nearby
gas well.
2.4.1 Sample Collection
Sampling was conducted on May 16-17,2002, and locations are shown in Figure 4. The routine
sampling locations included four springs, four surface, and five wells, three of which are located
near the cavity. At least two of the wells (Wells RB-D-01 and RB-D-03) are suitable for
monitoring because they were down gradient and would indicate possible migration of
radioactivity from the cavity.
2.4.2 Water Analysis Results
Gamma-ray spectral analysis results indicated that no man-made gamma-ray emitting
radionuclides were present in any offsite samples. Two of the 15 samples collected were above
the MDC for enriched tritium and none were above using the conventional method (see Table 4,
page 12).
2.4.3 Conclusions
Tritium concentrations in water samples collected onsite and offsite are consistent with those of
past studies at the RIO BLANCO Site. No radioactive materials attributable to the RIO BLANCO
test were detected in samples collected in the offsite areas during May 2002. All samples were
analyzed for presence of gamma-ray emitting radionuclides.
10

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~
/ Brennan Windmill

. F.awn ~reek #1
. Fawn Creek 8400' Downstream
. RB-D-03
. RB-W-01
RB-S~. . Fawn Creek 500' Downstream
Black Sulphur. RB-D-01.
Cer #4 I. . Fawn Creek 500' Upstream

. Fawn Creek 6800' Upstream
. B-1 Equity Fawn Creek Spr. #3
~
. Water Sampling Locations
. Surface Ground Zero
Map is not to scale
Figure 4. Project RIO BLANCO sampling locations for May 2002.
11
Meeker
,
N
LOCATION MAP
Rio Blanco
COUNTY

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Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the RIO BLANCO Site - May 2002
  TABLE 4     
Sample Collection. Enriched Tritium Tritium
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2.5 Sampling at Project GASBUGGY, New Mexico
History
Project GASBUGGY was a Plowshare Program test co-sponsored by the U.S. ABC and EI Paso
Natural Gas Co., conducted near Gobernador, New Mexico, on December 10, 1967. A nuclear
explosive with a 29-KT yield was detonated at a depth of 1,290 m (4,240 ft) to stimulate a low
productivity natural gas reservoir. Production testing was completed in 1976 and restoration
activities were completed in July 1978.
The principal aquifers near the test site are the Ojo Alamo Sandstone, an aquifer containing non-
potable water located above the test cavity, and the San Jose formation and Nacimiento formation.
Both surficial aquifers contain potable water. The flow regime of the San Juan Basin is not well
known, although it is likely that the Ojo Alamo Sandstone discharges to the San Juan River 50
miles northwest of the Gasbuggy site. Hydrologic gradients in the vicinity are downward, but
upward gas migration is possible (Chapman and Hokett, 1991).
2.5.1 Sample Collection
Annual sampling at Project GASBUGGY was completed during June 19-21,2002. All of the
routine sampling locations were collected except for Bubbling Spring which was dry (see
Figure 5).
2.5.2 Water Analysis Results
Tritium concentrations of water samples collected onsite and offsite are consistent with those of
past studies at the GASBUGGY Site.
Well EPNG 10-36 has yielded tritium activities between 100 and 560 pCi/L in each year since
1984, except in 1987. The sample collected in June 2002, yielded a tritium activity of 68.0:t 4.8
pCi/L. The migration mechanism and route are not currently known, although an analysis by
Desert Research Institute indicated two feasible routes, one through the Printed Cliffs sandstones,
and the other one through the Ojo Alamo sandstone, one of the principal aquifers in the region
(Chapman and Hokett, 1991). In either case, fractures extending from the cavity may be the
primary or a contributing mechanism. The proximity of the well to the test cavity suggests the
possibility that the activity increases may indicate migration from the test cavity.
All gamma-ray spectral analysis results indicated that no man-made gamma-ray emitting
radionuclides were present in any onsite and offsite samples above the MDC.
2.5.3 Conclusions
Tritium concentrations of water samples collected onsite and offsite are consistent with those of
past studies at the GASBUGGY Site.
13

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. Pond N. of
Well 30.3.32.343N
.
Well 30.3.32.343N
Cedar Springs.

Cave Springs.
. Arnold Ranch Spring
Arnold Ranch Well
.
Windmill 2
EPNG Well 1 0-36
.1
~
N
. Well 28.3.33.2338
J-5
/i

To Dulce
LOCATION MAP
o Surface Ground Zero
. Water Sampling Locations
Not a Sam lin Location
Map is not to scale
Figure 5. Project GAS BUGGY sampling locations for June 2002.
14

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A
I . R
I ~
w
S
I
Cll
d
na YSIS esu ts or ater amp! es 0 ecte at the GASBUGGY Site - June 2002
      TABLE 5    
Sample Collection Enriched Tritium Tritium(a)  Gamma Spectrometry(b)
Location Date  pCi/L :t 2 SD (MDC) pCi/L + 2 SD (MDC) pC ilL  (MDC)
Arnold Ranch 6/21/02     86.0 :t 132 (215) ND (1.8)
Spring        
Bubbling Springs 6/21/02       No sample, spring dry
Cave Springs 6/19/02     33.0:t 131 (215) ND (4.9)
Cedar Springs 6/20/02     -11.0:t 130 (215) ND (4.9)
La J ara Creek 6/19/02 26.0 :t 4.2  (6.2)   ND (4.9)
Lower Burro 6/19/02     59.6 :t 132 (215) ND (4.7)
Canyon          
Pond N. of Well  6/20/02     86.1 :t 132 (215) ND (4.9)
30.3.32.343          
Well EPNG-1O-36 6/20/02 68.0 :t 4.8  (6.2)   ND (4.9)
Jicarilla Well 1 6/19/02 7.8 :t 3.8  (6.1)   ND (5.0)
Well 28.3.33.233 6/19/02     2.2:t 131 (215) ND (5.0)
(South)          
Well 30.3.32.343  6/20/02     126:t 133 (215) ND (4.9)
(North)          
Windmill #2 6/19/02     -11.0:t 130 (215) ND (4.8)
Arnold Ranch Well 6/21/02 -.65 + 3.9a  (6.4)   ND (4.4)
(a) Indicate results are less than MDC (enriched or conventional method).
(b) Value in parenthesis represents 137Cs MDC (pCi/L).
ND Non-detected.
2.6 Sampling at Project GNOME, New Mexico
History
Project GNOME, conducted on December 10,1961, near Carlsbad, New Mexico, was a
multipurpose test emplaced at a depth of 1,216 ft in the Salado salt formation. The explosive
yield was slightly-more-than 3-KT. Oil and gas are produced from the geologic units below the
working point. The overlying Rustler formation contains three water-bearing zones: brine located
at the boundary of the Rustler and Salado formations, the Culebra Dolomite which is used for
domestic and stock supplies, and the Magenta Dolomite which is above the zone of saturation
(Chapman and Hokett, 1991). The ground water flow is generally to the west and southwest.
15

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Radioactive gases were accidentally vented following the test. In 1963, USGS conducted a tracer
study involving injection of 20 Ci tritium, 10 Ci 137Cs, 10 Ci 90Sr, and 4 Ci 1311 in the Culebra
Dolomite zone; using Wells USGS 4 and 8. During remediation activities in 1968-69,
contaminated material was placed in the test cavity and the shaft up to within 7 ft of the surface.
More material was slurried into the cavity and drifts in 1979. A potential exists for discharge of
this slurry to the Culebra Dolomite and to Rustler-Salado brine. Potentially this may increase as
the salt around the cavity compresses, forcing contamination upward and distorting and cracking
the concrete stem and grout.
2.6.1 Sample Collection
Annual sampling at Project GNOME was completed during June 25-27, 2002. The routine
sampling sites, depicted in Figure 6, includes ten monitoring wells in the vicinity of surface GZ;
the municipal supplies at Loving and Carlsbad, New Mexico.
2.6.2 Water Analysis Results
No tritium activity was detected in the Carlsbad municipal supply or the Loving Station well. An
analysis by Desert Research Institute (Chapman and Hokett, 1991) indicates that these sampling
locations, which are on the opposite side of the Pecos River from the Project GNOME site, are not
connected hydrologically to the site and, therefore, cannot become contaminated by Project
GNOME radionuclides.
Tritium results greater than the MDC were detected in water samples from four of the 12
sampling locations in the immediate vicinity of GZ. Tritium activities in wells DD-1, LRL-7,
USGS-4, and USGS-8 ranged from 2.36 x 103 (LRL-7) to 3.79 x 107 (DD-1) pCi/L. Well DD-1
collects water from the test cavity; Well LRL-7 collects water from a side drift; and Wells USGS-
4 and USGS-8 were used in the radionuclide tracer study conducted by the USGS. None of these
wells are sources of potable water.
In addition to tritium, 137Cs and 90Sr concentrations were observed in samples from Wells DD-I,
LRL-7, and USGS-8, while 90Sr activity was detected in Well USGS-4 as in previous years (see
Table 6). No tritium was detected in the remaining sampling locations, including Well USGS-I,
which the DR1 analysis (Chapman and Hokett, 1991) indicated is positioned to detect any
migration of radioactivity from the cavity. All other tritium results were below the MDC.
2.6.3 Conclusion
No radioactive materials attributable to the GNOME Test were detected in samples collected in
the offsite areas during June of 2002.
16

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Carls bad City
Well 7.
Carlsbad
4 8
USGS Wells. .
1. . LRL-7
!
"0
CO'
.Q
.!Q
&.;;
~
:g
o
PHS Well 8 .
PHS Well 10
PHS Well 6
.
,
N
8 Surface Ground Zero
. Water Sampling Locations
Map is not to scale.
EDDY
COUNTY
Figure 6. Program GNOME sampling locations for June 2002.
17

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Analysis Results for Water Samples Collected at the GNOME Site - June 2002
   TABLE 6    
Sample Collection Enriched Tritium Tritium  Gamma Spectrometry(b)
Location Date pCi/L :t 2 SD (MDC) pCi/L :t 2 SD (MDC) pCi/L (MDC) .
Well 7 City 6/25/02 -.33 :t 4.0" (6.7)   ND (4.0)
Well 2 City 6/25/02   19.0:t 149" (244) ND (5.0)
PHS 6 6/25/02   -84.0:t 147" (244) ND (4.9)
PHS 8 6/25/02   -36.8 :t 147" (244) ND (5.0)
PHS 9 6/25/02   50.0:t 149" (244) ND (1.7)
PHS 10 6/25/02   -50.0:t 147" (244) ND (1.5)
USGS Well 1 6/26/02 -1.3 :t 4.2" (7.0)   ND (4.5)
USGS Well 4 6/26/02   4.86 x 104 :t 550 (244) ND (1.6)
Well USGS 8 6/26/02   4.57 x 104:t 535 (244) Cs-137 
      97.0 :t 15.6 
       (1.6)
J. Mobley Ranch 6/25/02 1.9 :t 3.7" (6.0)   ND (4.9)
Well DD-1 6/27/02   3.79 x107 :t 1.48 x104 Cs-137 
     (244) 6.45 xl05 :t 9.73x104
      (4.04 x103)
LRL-7 6/26/02   2.36 x103 :t 189 (244) Cs-137 
      73.0 :t 12.0 
       (1.9)
(a) Indicate results are less than MDC (enriched or conventional method).
(b) Value in parenthesis represents 137Cs MDC (pCi/L).
ND Non-detected.
18

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REFERENCES
Chapman & Hockett, 1991. Evaluation of Groundwater Monitoring at Offsite Nuclear Test
Areas, Las Vegas, NV, Desert Research Institute, University of Nevada System, Report
DOEINV /1 0845-07 .
Final rule on Dec. 7, 2000. Code of Federal Regulations, Vol. 65, Title 40, Parts 9,141, and 142,
December 7,2000, National Primary Drinking Water Regulations; Radionuclides; Final Rule;
(40CFR9/141/142).
A Guide for Environmental Radiological Surveillance at U.S. Dept. of Energy Installations, July
1981, Office of Operational Safety Report. Las Vegas, NV: U.S. Department of Energy;
DOE/EP-0023.
Johns, F., et al. 1979. Radiochemical and Analytical Procedures for Analysis of Environmental
Samples. Las Vegas, NV: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; EMSL-LV-0539-17-1979.
Offsite Environmental Monitoring Report Radiation Monitoring Around Nuclear Test Areas,
Calendar Year 1992. EPA 600/R-94/209.
19

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GLOSSARY OF TERMS
Background Radiation
The radiation in man's environment, including cosmic rays and radiation from naturally-occurring
and man-made radioactive elements, both outside and inside the bodies of humans and animals.
The usually quoted average individual exposure from background radiation is 125 millirem per
year in mid-latitudes at sea level.
Curie (Ci)
The basic unit used to describe the rate of radioactive disintegration. The curie is equal to 37
billion disintegrations per second, which is the equivalent of 1 gram of radium. Named for Marie
and Pierre Curie who discovered radium in 1898. One microcurie (flCi) is 0.000001 Ci.
Isotope
Atoms of the same element with different numbers of neutrons in the nuclei. Thus 12C, l3C, and
14C are isotopes of the element carbon, the numbers denoting the approximate atomic weights.
Isotopes have very nearly the same chemical properties, but have different physical properties (for
example 12C and 13C are stable, 14C is radioactive).
Enrichment Method
A method of electrolytic concentration that increases the sensitivity of the analysis of tritium in
water. This method is used for selected samples if the tritium concentration is less than 700
pCi/L.
Minimum Detectable Concentration (MDC)
The smallest amount of radioactivity that can be reliably detected with a probability of Type I and
Type II errors at 5 percent each (DOE 1981).
Offsite
Areas exclusive of the immediate Test Site Area.
Type I Error
The statistical error of accepting the presence of radioactivity when none is present. Sometimes
called alpha error.
Type II Error
The statistical error of failing to recognize the presence of radioactivity when it is present.
Sometimes called beta error.
20

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Appendix A
Typical MDA Values for Gamma Spectroscopy
(100 minute count time)
Geometry*
Matrix
Volume

Isotope
Marinelli
Water
3.5 liter
MDA
Be-7
K-40
Cr-51
Mn-54
Co-57
Co-58
Fe-59
Co-60
Zn-65
Nb-95
Zr-95
4.56E+01
4.92E+01
5.88E+01
4.55E+01
9.65E+00
4.71E+00
1.07E+01
5.38E+00
1. 24E+01
5.64E+00
9.06E+00
Model 430G
Density 1.0 glml
Units pCi/L
Isotope MDA
Ru -106 4.76E+01
Sn-113 8.32E+00
Sb-125 1. 65E+01 
1-131 8.28E+00
Ba-133 9. 16E+00
Cs-134 6. 12E+00
Cs-137 6.43E+00
Ce-144 7.59E+01
Eu-152 2.86E+01
Ra-226 1.58E+01
U-235 1.01E+02
Am-241 6.60E+01
Disclaimer
The MDA's provided are for background matrix samples presumed to contain no known analytes and no
decay time. All MDA's provided here are for one specific *Germanium detector and the geometry of
interest. The MDA's in no way should be used as a source of reference for determing MDA's for any
other type of detector. All gamma spectroscopy MDA' s will vary with different types of shielding,
geometries, counting times and decay time of sample.
21

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Appendix B
Standard Operating Procedures for the Center for Radioanalysis & Quality Assurance
RQA-302
Standard Operating Procedures of Gamma-Ray Detector Systems
RQA-602
Tritium Enrichment Procedure
RQA-603
Standard Operating Procedure for 89Sr and 90Sr in Water, Air Filters and Milk
RQA-604
Standard Operating Procedure of Convention Tritium in Water
RQA-606
Analysis of Plutonium, Uranium and Thorium in Environmental Samples by
Alpha Spectroscopy
Standard Operating Procedures for the Center for Environmental Restoration, Monitoring
& Emergency Response
CER-203
Standard Operating Procedure for the Long-Term Hydrological Monitoring
Program
22

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