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  • 1 Risø National Laboratory Roskilde (Denmark)
  • 2 Radiation Protection Institute of Ireland Dublin (Ireland)
  • 3 Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences Uppsala (Sweden)
  • 4 Institute of Terrestrial Ecology Cumbria (UK)
  • 5 Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece)
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An intercomparison of sampling procedures used by five laboratories for the determination of radiocaesium in vegetation and peaty soil was carried out at two locations in Cumbria. The multiple sampling has given information on the homogeneity of the parameters studied at each location. The parameters comprise soil bulk densities, total deposition of137Cs, deposition of137Cs in three soil layers, biomass densities, concentrations of137Cs in pasture, and activity ratios (134Cs/137Cs) in soil and vegetation. The determination of total deposition of137Cs gave no indication of differences between the laboratories. The results from the soil profiles do indicate significant differences between laboratories. One laboratory using a coring technique observed difficulties during sampling due to compression of the soil. The coring technique should thus be avoided or applied with extreme care for the sampling of depth profiles in peaty soil. The results from the sampling of pasture show no indication of differences between the laboratories. For the parameters studied the observed variabilities across soil depths and locations range from 10% to 81% in terms of relative standard deviations. A comparison across all results at the two locations indicate a 50% higher field variability at one of the sites relative to the other.