Assessment Of Natural Radioactivity And Radiological Hazards In Different Ceramic Tile Samples Collected From Nigerian Markets

IJEP 41(12): 1352-1359 : Vol. 41 Issue. 12 (December 2021)

Adewoyin Olusegun Oladotun, Omeje Maxwell*, E.S. Joel, M.R. Usikalu, S.A. Akinwumi and T.A. Adagunodo

Covenant University, Department of Physics, College of Science and Technology, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria


This study presents the assessment of radiometric analysis conducted to determine the activity concentrations of natural radionuclides and the possible radiological hazards in ceramic tiles that are available in the Nigerian markets. The analysis was carried out on twelve tiles using gamma ray spectrometer. The tiles were grouped into three classes according to their country of production-locally made tiles, Indian and Chinese products. The results obtained revealed the activity concentration of 238U, 232Th and 40K to be in the range of 35.64-112.35, 33.20-81.54 and 134.10-663.07 Bq/kg for Nigeria products and a range of 18.68-94.47, 68.60-104.28 and 351.90-787.77 Bq/kg for both Indian and Chinese products, respectively. Further study was carried out to compare the components of the tiles available in Nigeria with the ones imported to other countries by both India and China, it was observed that the activity concentrations of Indian products are far higher than their products in Nigeria while in Chinese products the concentrations are far lower than what is available in the market in Nigeria. Moreover, the results of the radium equivalent activity, absorbed dose rate, external hazard index and gamma-index revealed that the quality of tiles imported to Nigeria from India and China are far safer than their products in other international markets. Indian products in the international market pose more risk to the users than their Chinese counterparts. Therefore, it is recommended that the Nigerian government should encourage locally made tiles and in the case of importation, Chinese tiles are highly recommended.


Radionuclides, Radiological hazards, Radiometric analysis, Gamma-index, External hazard index


  1. Pavlidou, S., A. Koroneos and G. Christofides. 2005. Imported plutonic rocks used in Greece as building materials : Mineralogy, petrology, geochemistry and physico-mechanical properties. Mineral Wealth. 135:37-54.
  2. Ghosh, D., et al. 2008. Assessment of alpha activity of building materials commonly used in West Bengal.
  3. Todorovic, N., et al. 2017. Concentration of 236Ra, 232Th and 40K in industrial kaolinized granite. J. Env. Radioactivity. 168:10-14.
  4. Righi, S. and L. Bruzzil. 2006. Natural radioactivity and radon exhalation in building materials used in Italian dwellings. J. Env. Radioactivity. 88:158-170.
  5. EC. 1999. Radiological protection principles concerning the natural radioactivity of building materials. Radiation Protection report (RP-112). European Commission, Luxembourg.
  6. UNSCEAR. 1993. Sources and effects of ionizing radiation. Report to the General Assembly with Scientific Annexes. United Nations Sceintific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation. United Nations Publications, New York, USA.
  7. Song, G., et al. 2012. Natural radioactivity levels in top-soil from the Pearl river delta zone, Guangdong, China. J. Env. Radioactivity. 103:48-53.
  8. Trevisi, S., et al. 2012. Natural radioactivity in building materials in the Europian Union:A database and an estimate of radiological significance. J. Env. Radioactivity. 105:11-20.
  9. Guillen, J., et al. 2014. Assessment of radiological hazard of commercial granites from Extramadura (Spain). J. Env. Radiation. 132:81-88.
  10. Dose, M., et al. 2018. Naturally occuring radio activity in some Swedish concretes and their constituents assessment by using I-index and dose model. J. Env. Radioactivity. 155-156:105-111.
  11. Ali, S., et al. 1996. Gamma-ray activity and dose rate of brick samples from some areas of North-West Frontier Province (NWFP), Pakistan. Sci. Total Env., 187(3):247-252.
  12. Tufail, M., et al. 1992. Natural radioactivity in the ceramics used in dwelling as construction material. Sci. Total Env., 127(3):243-253.
  13. Tufail, M., et al. 1994. Radiation doses in Pakistan houses. Sci. Total Env., 42(3):171-177.
  14. Chen, C.J., P.S. Weng and T.C. Chu. 1993. Radon exhalation rate from various building materials. Health Physics. 64(6):613-619.
  15. Khan, A.J., R. Prasad and R.K. Tyagi. 1992. Measurment of radon exhalation rate from some building materials. Nuclear Tracs Radiations Measurements. 20(4):609-610.
  16. IAEA. 1989. Measurement of radionuclides in food and the environmen. Technical reports (series no. 295). International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Austria.
  17. Alnour, I., et al. 2012. Natural radioactivity measurement in the granite rock of quarry sites, Johor, Malaysia. Radiation Physics Chem., 81(12):1842-1847.
  18. Ibrahim, N.M., et al. 1993. Measurement of radioactivity level in soil in Nile delta and middle Egypt. Health Physics. 4:620-627.
  19. Maxwell, O., et al. 2013. Comparison of activity concentration of 238U, 232Th and 40K in different layers of subsurface structure in Dei-Dei and Kubwa, Abuja, north-central Nigeria. Radiation Physics Chem., 91:70-80.
  20. Maxwell, O., et al. 2013. Measurement of 238U, 232Th and 40K in boreholes at Gosa and Lugbe, Abuja, north-central Nigeria. Radiation Prot. Dosimetry. 1-7. DOI: 10.1093/rpd/nct140.
  21. Supian, B. and C.J. Evans. 1992. Statistics and nuclear counting: theory, problems and solutions. Statistics Errors Measurements. 26-35.
  22. Ahmed, N.K. 2005. Measurement of natural radioactivity in building materials in Oena city, upper Egypt. J. Env. Radioact., 83:91-99.
  23. Hamby, D. M. and A.K. Tynybekov. 2002. Uranium, thorium and potassium in soils along the shore of the lake Issyk-Kyol in the Kyrghyz Republic. Env. Monitor. Assess., 73:101-108.
  24. OECD. 1979. Exposure to radiation from the natural radio-activity in building materials. Report by a group of experts of the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency. Organization for Economic Corporation and Development, Paris.
  25. UNSCEAR. 2000. Sources and effects of ionizing radiation. United Nations Scientific Committee on the effects of Atomic Radiation, New York.
  26. Beck, H. L. 1966. Environmental gamma radiation from deposited fission products (1960-1964). Health Phys., 12(3):313-322.
  27. Akinloye, M. K., G.A. Isola and O.O. Oladapo. 2012. Investigation of natural gamma radioactivity levels and associated dose rates from surface soils in ore metropolis, Ondo state, Nigeria. Env. Natural Resour. Res., 2: 140-145.
  28. Avwiri, G.O., F.U. Nte and A.I. Olanrewaju. 2011. Determination of radionuclide concentration of landfill at Eliozu, Port Harcourt, Rivers state. Sci. Africana. 10.
  29. Krisiuk, E.M., et al. 1971. A study on radioactivity in building materials. Leningrad, Ministry of Public Health of the RFSR. Leningrad Research Institute for Radiation Hygiene.
  30. Stranden, E. 1976. Some aspects of radioactivity of building materials. Phys. Norvegia. 8:167-173.
  31. Krieger, R. 1981. Radioactivity of construction materials. Betonwerk Fertigteil Technik. 47:468-473.
  32. Swedjenmark, G.A. 1986. Swedish limitation schemes to decrease radon daughters in indoor air. Health Physics. 51:569-578.
  33. Bruzzi, L., et al. 2000. Radioactivity in raw materials and end products in the Italian ceramics industry. J. Env. Radioact., 47:171-181.
  34. Markkanen, M. 1995. Radiation dose assessment for materials with elevated natural radioactivity (STUK-B_STO 32). Finnish Centre for Radiation and Nuclear Safety, Helsinki, Finland.
  35. Amin, S.A. and M. Naji. 2013. Natural radioactivity in different commercial samples used in Yemeni buildings. Radiation Physics Chem., 86:37-41.
  36. Xinwei, L. 2004. Radioactivity level in Chinese building ceramic tile. Radiat. Prot. Dosim., 112(2):323-327.
  37. Kumari, R., K. Kant and M. Garg. 2017. Natural radioactivity in rock samples of Aravali hills in India. Int. J. Radiation Res., 15(4):391-398.
  38. NCRP. 2014. Report no. 175 – Decision making for late-phase recovery from major nuclear or radiological incidents. National Council on Radiation Potection and Measurements.
  39. UNSCEAR. 1998. Sources, effects and risks of ionizing radiation. Report to the General Assembly with Annexes. United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation. United Nations Publication, New York, USA.