A nuclear power station is located in a roughly rectangular valley that is 5 km long, 2 km wide,and 200 m deep. In a worst-case scenario of nuclear accidents, 120 kg of Iodine-131 could bereleased into the atmosphere. Assume that the release of Iodine-131 is very rapid and all of itwould be uniformly distributed through the valley’s atmosphere with a concentration of 11.0ppm by volume. The average wind speed through the valley (entering at one 2 km × 200 m endand exiting at the other) is 1.5 m/min. In addition, Iodine-131 can be removed by two otherprocesses: 1) radioactive decay with a half-life of 8.1 days, and 2) sedimentation to the groundwith a rate constant of 0.02/day. Determine the time needed for the concentration of Iodine131 to decrease to the safe level of 1.0 × 10-5 ppm by volume. Note: radioactive decay istypically a first-order reaction.

Question

A nuclear power station is located in a roughly rectangular valley that is 5 km long, 2 km wide,
and 200 m deep. In a worst-case scenario of nuclear accidents, 120 kg of Iodine-131 could be
released into the atmosphere. Assume that the release of Iodine-131 is very rapid and all of it
would be uniformly distributed through the valley’s atmosphere with a concentration of 11.0
ppm by volume. The average wind speed through the valley (entering at one 2 km × 200 m end
and exiting at the other) is 1.5 m/min. In addition, Iodine-131 can be removed by two other
processes: 1) radioactive decay with a half-life of 8.1 days, and 2) sedimentation to the ground
with a rate constant of 0.02/day. Determine the time needed for the concentration of Iodine131 to decrease to the safe level of 1.0 × 10-5 ppm by volume. Note: radioactive decay is
typically a first-order reaction.

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