Data: Air Quality and Cooking

I was curious what cooking does to air quality and nuclear radiation. We know that cooking meats releases naturally occurring radioactive materials just like wildfires do.

For the curious, I was cooking bulgogi. As you can see, at 1:30 when I started cooking, there was a huge spike in the indoor air pollution in my home. In fact this level of indoor air pollution does qualify as “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups” under the international standard.



Now let’s look at the nuclear radiation aspect of cooking. This is less cut and dry…

My sensors measure only beta and gamma decay, not alpha. These kinds of radiation have only moderate penetrating power, and so we would expect to see a lower level indoors with less change over time. The higher outdoor level comes from both solar radiation and the norms radiated by the wildfires. This data is the hourly average for Geiger cpm readings taken every minute.

As you can see, despite a decrease in the ambient radiation levels measured outside, there was a slight increase in indoor radiation levels.