Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Radon - What is it? Post 1 of 7

Radon (pronounced /ˈreɪdɒn/, RAY-don) is a chemical element with symbol Rn and atomic number 86. It is a radioactive, colorless, odorless, tasteless noble gas, occurring naturally as the decay product of radium.  (from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radon)

Radon is a radioactive gas that is released from the normal decay of uranium in rocks and soils.  Uranium is found in nearly all soils everywhere in the U.S.  Radon is invisible, colorless, odorless and tasteless and seeps up through the ground and diffuses into the air. Radon gas can accumulate in buildings, especially in confined areas such as attics, and basements. It can also be found in some spring waters and hot springs. It is often the single largest contributor to an individual's background radiation dose, and is the most variable from location to location.

Here are some facts about radon:
Elevated levels of radon are found in both new and old buildings
Radon can be found in buildings other than homes.
Radon can be found in homes built on all types of foundations, including crawlspaces and slab-on-grade basements.
Radon is a concern throughout out the US
Radon can vary from house to house.  The only way to know how much radon may be in your house is to have it tested.

References
Wikipedia   Wikipedia Link
US Environmental Protection Agency EPA Link
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Colorado Radon Info

My next post will discuss the affects of radon on your health.

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1 comment:

  1. Knowledge is power and this article helps gain an understanding of the importance of radon monitoring. Thanks Judy.

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