Monday, November 28, 2011

Raw Data Download Now Available From The 11/8/11 Long Radioactive Half Life Fallout Detection

Raw Data Download Now Available From The 11/8/11 Long Radioactive Half Life Fallout Detection

The original analysis may be found at the following link.
ALERT- Persistent Long Half Life Radioactive Fallout Detected in 11/8/11 Saint Louis, Mo Rainfall

Raw Fallout Data in a CSV format saved as a TXT file
After navigating to the filedropper site, select "DOWNLOAD THIS FILE"

Raw Background Data in a CSV format saved as a TXT file
After navigating to the filedropper site, select "DOWNLOAD THIS FILE"


  1. Here's my analysis of Potrblog's 11/08/11 raw data in excel format using the two-isotope model:

    N(t) = Nb + N1*EXP(-ln(2)*t/tau1) + N2*EXP(-ln(2)*t/tau2),

    where the background count rate is Nb, the decay rates for isotopes 1 and 2 are N1 and N2, respectively, and the half-lives for isotopes 1 and 2 are tau1 and tau2, respectively, and t is the time in hours. I assume that N1 and N2 are unrelated, that is, N2 is independent of N1.

    Nb = 0.49 cps, N1 = 7.33 cps, tau1 = 0.454 hrs, N2 = 0.64 cps, tau2 = 9.32 hrs, R^2 = 0.989.

    This analysis can be found at

    These results are not that different from my analysis of the 10/26/11 raw data.

  2. Be Well, give these two synthetic data sets a whirl, see if you come up with the same.

  3. The links to the "synthetic" control data sets 1 and 2 are broken. The last set for the background synthetic data appears to work. When Potrblog uses the term "synthetic", what is Potrblog referring to? Please describe in detail any differences between the raw cps data and Potrblog's synthetic data. In any case, I prefer to work with the raw cps data since my model applies to the raw cps data.

  4. Be Well, thanks for the heads up on the broken links; they should be working now.

    By "synthetic" we mean the data is NOT from a real detection. We input possible decay chains and their starting conditions into a model; added noise that appropriately models the Geiger counter; and generated data based on the time steps used in the original detection. The starting conditions and decay chains were picked to mimic the results of the 10/26/11 fallout detections.

    Since the starting conditions and decay chains are exactly known, it gives a good way to check how well one's assumptions and groundrules, as applied to excel's data fitting routines, back-fit to the original data.

  5. Again, please state your assumptions as to which isotopes, possible decay chains and starting conditions you are using to generate these data sets. Are you using decay equations? How about writing the decay equations down so people can see what you are doing. Having looked at sets 1 and 2, I have more questions. Why are you adding Geiger counter noise to your models? It's really unnecessary if the goal is just to compare two models to one another. Set 2 looks like it has negative cps numbers in it. This doesn't make any sense.

  6. Be Well, We double checked the downloads and did not find any negative numbers; make sure to import them as CSV files.

    The decay values were generated deterministically from Bateman Equations; we would have preferred to generate the values probabilistically but did not have time to build that model.

    It is a blind test for a reason; namely because the assumptions one makes to analyze the data affects the outcome. The noise is important because it makes the test realistic. For example, depending on how the solver regression is performed, the distribution of the noise can influence the outcome.

    Moreover, the probabilistic aspect of the noise opens up the range of possible solutions to a greater extent than the calculated control limits would imply for a solution based any single set of data.

  7. Having done a little more searching, I think that the simplest explanation for the shape of the Potrblog Saint Louis raw cps data is due to RADON DECAY FROM BOTH THE URANIUM SERIES AND THORIUM SERIES DECAY CHAINS. They are described in detail at The cps data from 0 < t < 20 min. is dominated by the decay of Pb214 (26.8 min. half-life) and its daughter isotope Bi214 (20 min half-life), and both are strong beta/gamma emitters that can be detected by a common Geiger counter. These isotopes are products of the decay of Rn226 in the decay chain of naturally occurring uranium (U238). The chain decay model for Pb214, and its daughter Bi214, should decay slightly longer than the decay of Pb214 alone. I measure ~ 27 minutes so that is consistent, within the error bars for the measurement, with a Radon decay chain. The cps data for t > 60 min. is dominated by the decay of Pb212 (10.6 hours half-life) which is a beta emitter that can be detected by a common Geiger counter. This isotope is a product of the decay of Rn220 in the decay chain of naturally occurring Thorium (Th232). I measure ~ 9.3 hours for the 11/08/11 raw data and 10.3 hours for the 10/26/11 raw data so those half-lives are consistent, within the error bars for the measurement, with a Radon decay chain. NO ADDITIONAL ISOTOPES ARE NEEDED TO FIT THE RAW DATA.
    Both Uranium and Thorium are found everywhere in the earth’s crust. Thorium is about 3 times more prevalent than Uranium (6 ppm vs. 2 ppm). Eventually near the surface, the decay products of both produce radioactive radon gases (Rn226 and Rn220) that diffuse upward through the soil. Radon is a heavy radioactive inert gas, so no reactions with the soil occur. Rain is usually associated with low pressure fronts and is known to increase the amount of Radon that seeps upward though the soil. When, at the surface, the radon will decay (Rn222 has a 3.8 days half-life and Rn220 has a 55 sec. half-life) and go from a radioactive inert gas to a radioactive, solid, and electrically charged particle that will stick to dust particles and aerosols. These particles decay quickly to Pb214 and Bi214, from the uranium series decay chain, and Pb214 from the thorium series decay chain. These dust particles are captured and concentrated by the rain and are deposited on exposed surfaces like cars, or trapped in automobile air filters. But the bottom line is that almost all the radioactivity is gone in a few days. You would not want to breathe the dust or ingest the dirt. SO POTRBLOG’S MEASUREMENTS ARE INDICATIVE OF A BIGGER PROBLEM, NAMELY RADON GAS AND NOTHING MORE. To be continued…

  8. There is no need to evoke elaborate interactions of solar corona mass ejections with Fukushima fallout to explain Potrblog’s data. Fukushima fallout is currently present, but at levels far below what is considered hazardous to your health for example, It takes very sensitive, heavily-shielded, cryogenically-cooled NaI detectors and very long averaging times to see current Fukushima fallout. Ordinary Geiger counters will never be sensitive enough to see Fukushima Fallout unless you are much closer to Japan. What the Potrblog team has reported in past “detections” (Fukushima fallouts in the form of Iodine 133, Xenon 133, and Neptunium 239) are based on a flawed analysis of their raw data using the Excel trendline tool, cherry-picking parts of the data to support a prior hypothesis, and the inability to use the Excel solver to fit realistic physics models to the data (see my comments on the 10/26/11 detection).
    To those readers visiting this site, nuclear power certainly has a lot of warts (safety, cost, etc.) and Fukushima is a continuing disaster for Japan and the nuclear industry. But, from a safety standpoint, you should be much more concerned about Radon gas in your home but than about Fukushima fallout here in the US. This will be my last post unless more so-called Potrblog “detections” are claimed. Merry Christmas and now cue the Ms. X flame-reply/obfuscation.

  9. Be Well,

    If you deserve "flames" for anything in your last post it would be for wishing someone a Merry Christmas in the same breath as attacking them, but THAT kind of flaming is not in our purview.

    One thing you could clear up is if you are engaged in Advocate or Non-Advocate analysis.

    Otherwise, you have given some valuable quantitative input which points to an increase in uncertainty in the short half life time frame. However, it is risky to qualitatively extrapolate that uncertainty into a conclusion that people should NOT take cost effective risk mitigation actions relative to the Fukushima threat.

    If you are giving Non-advocate analysis, it would be helpful if you performed your analysis on the synthetic data we provided. see

    In the same regard, please quantitatively support your claim that Geiger counters can't pick up Fukushima radiation, by giving a Non-Advocate analysis of the long half life fallout in the recent detection, and of the persistent long half life radioactive fallout we previously identified here.

    Thanks for you input.

  10. I measured a background from your 10/23/11 raw cps data of 0.49 cps and I published it in your comment thread attached to that detection, in your blog. Later, I measured a background from your latest 11/18/11 detection of 0.49 cps posted in the first comment of this thread, in your blog. So the background count rate has not changed (within the inherent uncertainty in the raw data) and there is NO persistent long half-life radiation accumulated in your data between those dates. Just because I'm a non-advocate doesn't mean I'm going to do something that, to me, doesn't make good technical sense. Look, I've been trying to give you guys really good tips on how to best analyze your data for months, but you have stubbornly ignored the most important suggestions, so why should I waste more time with "synthetic" data?

  11. This is to Be Well

    Phoenix hit 700 CPM beta this week according to radnet.

    I've found an EPA guide for emergency responders that states explicitly over and over again that 300 CPM is the point for action levels and responders are supposed to check with health physicists at 3X background (180CPM).

    Furthermore, I spoke to our state's radiological emergency person and he said at 1000 CPM air advisories are issued.

    So, Be Well I think you are just wrong that the levels pose no health risk.

    I know an epidemiologist who has been analyzing excess mortality since March and the data show increases that are statistically significant

  12. Madam, all I can comment on is stuff posted on YOUR site in which you said "Raw Data Download Now Available From The 11/8/11 Long Radioactive Half Life Fallout Detection". Please admit that you probably were in error on your latest posting and don't try and change the subject by bringing in other sites into the discussion. I don't have the time to verify every internet site posting Fukushima "warnings". The only reason I am spending a lot of my time on your site is because I think that, by posting your raw data sets online, you have shown that 1) Potrblog genuinely wants feedback on their results from the online community, 2) Potrblog genuinely wants the truth (as they see it) to come out, 3)Potrblog wants to do good work, and 4) Potrblog want people to Be Well. We have identical goals.

    When Potrblog posts stuff on the internet, many people follow it. Many believe in what Potrblog posts. They react to what Potrblog posts. They get anxious over what Potrblog posts. Some of what Potrblog posts scares the hell out of people! They spend money based on what Potrblog posts. With this power comes great great responsibility.

    If you really want to get at the truth, if you really want to do good work, if you really want people to Be Well by not stressing out over unproven fallout posting on your site, then admit/retract your errors here in Potrblog and in the YouTube postings regarding Iodine 133, Xenon 133, and Neptunium 239 and long half-life detections in Saint Louis. Sure you will take a hit at first, but people will respect your honesty and, guess what, they will come back to you in greater numbers than before.

    It is obvious from our dialogs you are an intelligent lady and so is the video commentator. I will make you an offer. If you do these things then I promise that I will personally analyze future Potrblog detections (raw cps only) for two years if you wish, and during that time I will help you get the tools that you need to "do good work". You have my word.

  13. To Malia,
    Please post the relevant Radnet links to your 700 cpm statement so I can look at it. The real question is what's causing the 700 cpm (11.7 cps) reading? Here's is what I said regarding Fukushima fallout "Fukushima fallout is currently present, but at levels far below what is considered hazardous to your health" and gave several links to respected university research groups to document my statement. I never said Radon was not a health risk. In fact I said: "MEASUREMENTS ARE INDICATIVE OF A BIGGER PROBLEM, NAMELY RADON GAS". Now go to, I don't know what the local weather conditions were in Phoenix at the time but local weather can have a large effect on Radon concentrations.

  14. Be Well,
    Unfortunately you have confused being helpful with being correct.

    There is a VERY SERIOUS ERROR in your analysis which SERVES TO HIDE the long half life fallout, and thereby INCORRECTLY and DANGEROUSLY reassures people that there was no persistent long half life fallout detected.

    Your work inappropriately raised the background radiation a full 1.25 standard deviations above what the data actually supports.

    Given the seriousness of your error and our inability to mathematically explain how you could have accidentally made such an error, we would like you to MATHEMATICALLY DEFEND IN DETAIL why you set the background radiation to 0.49 cps when the average value in reality was 0.438 cps.

    We will not tolerate disinformation; especially disinformation which places the health and safety of others at risk.

    We hope you have a very good mathematical explanation and rationale as to why you raised the background radiation by a full 1.25 standard deviations greater than it should have been.

  15. I think I have documented, in the many posts made here, and in much more rigorous detail than Potrblog, where those numbers came from. I have also posted links to the two spreadsheets that produced those baseline numbers, while all Potrblog has posted are graphs with nothing more that csv text files which lack the completeness of a spread sheet model. This conveniently doesn't allow anyone to check Potrblog model methodology. Therefore I see no need to defend any further my scientific approach.

  16. Be Well,
    you have been ask a very specific and very pertinent question about a very specific error in YOUR analysis; an error which has SIGNIFICANT PUBLIC HEALTH IMPLICATIONS.

    Your inflation of the background radiation by 1.25 standard deviations serves to hide long half life radiation, and we can see no legitimate mathematical reason for that inflation.

    Since you self identify as a "Senior Scientist, Oak Ridge National Laboratory", your apparent unwillingness to HAPPILY, QUICKLY, OPENLY, and SPECIFICALLY explain your momentous error (and its impact); lends further credence to the root cause of ethical issues which have plagued ORNL in recent years.

    At this point, it would probably be wise for you to clearly state that you do NOT represent ORNL.

    We would suggest that IF you are who you portend to be that the proper course of action would be for you to correct / explain the error to avoid even the slightest appearance of a "FalloutGate".

  17. To the readers of Potrblog,

    In science any new discovery is treated with high scrutiny and healthy skepticism until the results are replicated by others. Potrblog’s claims of a persistent increase in the Saint Louis long half-life background radiation and of detections of Iodine 133, Xenon 133, and Neptunium 239, at levels a Geiger counter can detect, are not borne out by any other reputable scientific source; so it seems to me that all the burden of proof is on Potrblog to convince readers that their analysis is correct. I have taken Potrblog raw cps data and least-squares-fitted realistic physics models of radioactive decay to the entire data set in a totally unbiased, objective way and come up with different results, which are well documented in the Potrblog comment threads for the 10/26/11 and 11/08/11 detections, complete with download links to the analysis for anyone to see. My results show that the Saint Louis raw data is very consistent with measurements of LOCAL RADON DECAY PRODUCTS AND THE BACKGROUND COUNT RATE IS THE SAME, WITHIN THE UNCERTAINTY OF THE RAW COUNT DATA DUE TO COUNT NOISE. To be continued……….

  18. Potrblog’s approach, on the other hand, is highly subjective in that the raw count data is manually broken up into “hand-picked” segments where a simple straight trendline is fitted to the data, because Potrblog is not competent enough to use the correct decay model in Excel’s solver tool. The problem with the Potrblog approach is that the results of the manual approach are very sensitive to where and how much of the data is hand-picked, and results in false conclusions that are entirely due to their manual approach. Readers should be very concerned about this. When I pointed out this problem to Potrblog in the 10/26/11 detection, although not acknowledging their mistakes, Potrblog subsequently stopped making claims of Iodine 133, Xenon 133, and Neptunium 239 detections. In desperation, Potrblog then started talking about a vague system-of-systems (SOS) approach using so-called “synthetic” data, and Potrblog has ignored my repeated requests for details on how they produced their synthetic data. Potrblog’s claim of a persistent increase in the Saint Louis long half-life background radiation is based on this SOS approach. I do not trust Potrblog’s SOS “synthetic” data approach because they have failed to disclose on the Potrblog site the physics decay model(s) and the assumptions that go into it. Readers should be very concerned about this as well. In conclusion, as readers, you have a choice to make. You can choose to believe these fallout claims (unsupported by other scientists) of the amateurs at Potrblog, or you can choose to believe this scientist’s opinion based on methods that I have already disclosed. In any event, I will continue to monitor future Potrblog detection claims where the raw count data is posted, and I will continue to provide a scientific analysis, where possible, of claims posted on this site.
    Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  19. Be Well -

    Without getting tangled up in the argument here, can I ask a couple of questions?

    1. I think you're rolling up multiple (beta and gamma) decays in a single chain into one effective half-life and one constant "N". Is this correct? I'm just asking because I want to understand.

    2. If radon welling up from the ground is the explanation, it's surprising to see the wide range of activity which POTRblog reports (20x - 160x background). Any comment?

    3. The longer half-life component is consistent with Pb212, I agree. Could it also be consistent with I-123 or I-130?

    After TMI, a physics professor in Maine detected radioactive material in the atmosphere following a rainstorm. For many years, his observation was dismissed with the claim that he'd only detected radon.

    Aaron Datesman

  20. Be Well,

    With all due politeness, please answer the question! Under what mathematical theory can you justify inflating the MEASURED background radiation just to make your "solution" workable?

    What you did was change the problem to fit your desired solution; that is a big NO-NO. The background radiations is a measured boundary condition, it is not something one should alter in order to make some desired solution appear feasible. That facts are that you inflated the background radiation by more than 1.25 standard deviations. If that was a legitimate mathematical technique, you could have kept on inflating the background radiation until ALL the radioactivity was hidden. In Japan they call that TEPCO math; hopefully it is NOT also ORNL math too.

    As it stands now, by raising the background radiation you hid nearly 71% of the radioactivity that occurred over that 12 day period. After 3.5 days of your "solution", there would be NO detectable levels of your decay curve left. The remaining 8.5 days of your "solution" are comprised of nothing more than a improperly inflated background radiation level. THAT SMACKS OF A TECHNIQUE TO HIDE THE LONG TERM RADIOACTIVE FALLOUT. It is NOT quantitatively mathematically defensible. Moreover, you can NOT defend your action qualitatively either!.
    The groundrules supplied with the background measurement data CLEARLY indicate those measurements are LESS shielded than the radioactive sample; and that the background radiation measured may show some influence from the radioactive source. The background measurements used are CONSERVATIVE measurements. Under those conditions there can be no qualitatively defensible reason to inflate the background radiation.

    It should be pretty clear by now that you have painted yourself into corner. The only real question that remains is if you understood that you were wrongfully hiding the longterm radiation. Your unwillingness to either come clean or mathematically defend your actions lends credence to a purposeful act.

    We suggest that you come clean very quickly, and that you thoughtfully consider the ramifications to public health by your so-far refusal to address and defend your actions mathematically.

    As stated previously, we at POTRBLOG will NOT tolerate deception; our stance is especially significant when that deception places the public's health at risk.

    We politely again ask you to immediately and mathematically defend your decision to alter the problem to fit your desired solution.