Skip to main content
Theodore Ray
Planning and development surveyor
Asked a question 2 years ago

Does Fly Ash Contain Radioactive Elements?

Is it true that Indian Fly Ash contains radioactive elements?

Where am I?

In TheConstructor you can ask and answer questions and share your experience with others!

Terry Collins
Sustainability consultant
analysis by different agencies and researchers found that fly ash typically contained 10 to 30 ppm of uranium.
Timmothy Ferguson
Assistant Project Manager


I considered that you are asking for fly ash from the power plant. 

To understand the concept, first of all, you know that fly ash from anywhere has radioactive elements. It also includes Mercury to the original beds of coal. 

Some radioactive elements like thorium uranium and there TK products like radium and radon. All these elements are less toxic (chemically) as compared to call products such as selenium, mercury and arsenic. 

As a reference to the above concept, yes fly ash contains radioactive elements but it does no harm to any construction activities and construction materials. Thus it is safe to use up to the proper limit as per IS code or ACI.

Kent Welch
Planning and development surveyor

I find it difficult to agree with you. The fly ash is collected from thermal powerhouses. The coal used in these thermal plants may be from India or other countries. As far as deposits of radioactive materials in India is concerned, such material is found from coal in Jharkhand. But till now there are no reports about fly ash being contaminated with radioactive elements. 

The radioactive material is found in some composite form and not in pure element form. The sand in Kerala has some radioactive material. But there is no coal mine in Kerala. To say that Indian fly ash contains radioactive elements does not appear to be scientifically correct.