Radioactive Waste - Research Article from Environmental Encyclopedia

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Radioactive Waste

Radioactive waste is the "garbage" left as a result of the use of nuclear materials by human societies. Such waste can be categorized as low-level, intermediate-level, or high-level waste. The term transuranic waste is also used to describe materials consisting of elements heavier than uranium in the periodic table.

The term low-level radioactive waste usually refers to materials that contain a small amount of radioactivity dispersed in a large volume of material. Such materials are produced in a great variety of industrial, medical, and research procedures. A common practice is to store these materials in sealed containers until their level of radioactivity is very low and then to dispose of them by shallow burial or in other traditional solid waste disposal systems.

The assumption is that the level of radiation released by these wastes is too low to cause any harmful environmental effects. That assumption has...

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This section contains 603 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Radioactive Waste Encyclopedia Article
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Radioactive Waste from Environmental Encyclopedia. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.