NORM is the acronym for Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material, which potentially includes all radioactive elements found in the environment.
Learn about different types of radiometric dating, such as carbon dating.
Understand how decay and half life work to enable radiometric dating.
These elements have always been present in the Earth's crust and atmosphere, and are concentrated in some places, such as uranium orebodies which may be mined.
The term NORM exists also to distinguish ‘natural radioactive material’ from anthropogenic sources of radioactive material, such as those produced by nuclear power and used in nuclear medicine, where incidentally the radioactive properties of a material maybe what make it useful.
uptake in marine life and tuna migration patterns, Nicholas Fisher of Stony Brook University and Daniel Madigan of Stanford's Hopkins Marine Station knew that young bluefins caught off California during the summer of 2011 likely would have spent their early days in contaminated waters off Fukushima.
All minerals and raw materials contain radionuclides of natural origin.
The most important for the purposes of radiation protection are the radionuclides in the U-238 and Th-232 decay series.
For most human activities involving minerals and raw materials, the levels of exposure to these radionuclides are not significantly greater than normal background levels and are not of concern for radiation protection.
Potassium-40 is another radioactive element naturally found in your body and has a half-life of 1.3 billion years.
Other useful radioisotopes for radioactive dating include Uranium -235 (half-life = 704 million years), Uranium -238 (half-life = 4.5 billion years), Thorium-232 (half-life = 14 billion years) and Rubidium-87 (half-life = 49 billion years).
However from the perspective of radiation doses to people, such a distinction is completely arbitrary.