Application example: Radionuclides in laboratory lysimeter experiment

Institute for resource ecology

Get product information here:

Enquire now

Transport and transfer behaviour of long-lived radionuclides along the groundwater-soil-surface-plant causal pathway in the context of long-term climate change.

When considering the long-term safety of radioactive waste storage, possible leaks and the migration and accumulation of radionuclides in the surrounding areas must be taken into account. The results of the TransLARA joint project, funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, will provide a deeper understanding of the complex mechanisms of radionuclide transport from the groundwater zone, through the soil, and into the plants. This deeper understanding will facilitate improved risk assessments for the exposure of the population over extended time periods. (Source:

Experimental method

  • Investigation of the solubility and the migration of radionuclides in the soil, and the transfer from soil to plant in a laboratory test.
  • Provision and control of suitable conditions for plant growth with the help of an LED greenhouse for lysimeters, especially constructed for the project (utility model/IP protection).
  • Equipping the greenhouse with a special LED for radiation suitable for plant physiology and simultaneous water sprinkling.
  • Simultaneously monitoring of control parameters in the soil that have a significant influence on the solubility of substances: pH value, redox potential and water tension.
  • Measurement of the solution concentrations in soil water from different depths (miniature suction cups) and from different zones in the lysimeter floor.
  • For this purpose, we custom designed and produced a segmented lysimeter floor for the detection of seepage water in seven hermetically separated areas (utility model/IP protected).

The devices were produced, delivered and installed in the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) laboratory by ecoTech.

Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf
Institute for Resource Ecology


Dr. Johannes Raff  
Dr. Alix Günther  

The following institutions are associated partners in the Trans-LARA joint project with the HZDR, each with similar ecoTech laboratory equipment:

Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena
Institute for Geosciences  
Applied Geology


Dr. Thorsten Schäfer  
Mr. Marcus Böhm (MSc)  

Leibniz Universität Hannover
Institute for Radioecology and Radiation Protection


Dr. Beate Riebe