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Michael E. Kitto, Ph.D.

  • Michael E. Kitto

    Michael E. Kitto, Ph.D.

    • Nuclear Chemistry
    • Assistant Professor, School of Public Health, Environmental Health Sciences

    • Ph.D., University of Maryland at College Park (1987)
    (518) 486-1476
    Fax: (518) 473-2895

  • Studies continue to measure and  map radioactivity (including radon)  levels in groundwater.
    Studies continue to measure and map radioactivity (including radon) levels in groundwater.

Research Interests

Exposure to radon and its decay products accounts for over half of all radiation dose received for the average U.S. citizen. The EPA estimates that the radioactive products from decay of indoor radon are responsible for approximately 22,000 lung cancer deaths in the U.S. each year. Indoor-radon studies at the Wadsworth Center have been ongoing since 1985 with the long-term objective of preventing exposure of homeowners to high concentrations of radon.

Areas of primary interest include:

  1. Examining the correlation of surficial geology to indoor radon
  2. Identifying high-risk areas for radon in NY State 
  3. Radioactivity in groundwater 
  4. Radon educational programs 
  5. Occupational exposure to radiation
  6. Determination of the content and emission of radiation from building materials

We recently completed a project to produce town-level radon-risk maps for New York State ( using indoor-radon measurements from over 50,000 homes. The results were mapped using a geographic information system and correlated to digitized surficial geology to enable assignment of radon risk for each city and town in the State. The maps were distributed to local governments, home-related professional groups (e.g., house builders and home inspectors), public and private schools, and real estate offices throughout the State. The maps are a valuable resource for targeting high-risk areas for measurement and mitigation, and for establishing policy regarding real estate transactions and the implementation of radon-resistant building codes.

Select Publications

Kitto ME, Marrantino JC, Fielman EM, Haines DK, Semkow TM, Bari A.
Long-term Monitoring of Radioactivity in Fish from New York Waters.
Journal of Environmental Radioactivity.
Kitto ME, Torres MA, Haines DK, Semkow TM.
Radon Measurement of Natural Gas Using Alpha Scintillation Cells.
Journal of Environmental Radioactivity.
Kitto ME, Menia TA, Haines DK, Beach SE, Bradt CJ, Fielman EM, Syed UF, Semkow TM, Bari A, Khan AJ .
Airborne gamma-ray emitters from Fukushima detected in New York State.
Journal of Radioanalytical & Nuclear Chemistry.
Kitto ME, Green JG.
Mapping of Indoor Radon Potential at the Township Level.
Atmospheric Environment.
Parekh PP, Khan AR, Torres MA, Kitto ME.
Concentrations of Selenium, Barium, and Radium in Brazil Nuts.
Journal of Food Composition Analysis.