Title: Nondestructive Spectrometric Study on a Radioactive Particle Embedded in a Marine Sediment
Citation: MICROSCOPY AND MICROANALYSIS vol. 14 no. 4 p. 321-327
Publication Year: 2008
JRC N°: JRC48617
ISSN: 1431-9276
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC48617
DOI: 10.1017/S1431927608080707
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: A radioactive particle embedded in a sediment collected from the Irish Sea was examined with spectrometric methods to understand the potential bioavailability of its constituents. Images of the particle surface were acquired in the backscattering mode by scanning electron microscopy. The elemental composition of the particle surface layer was measured using energy dispersive ~SEM-EDX! and wavelength dispersive ~SEM-WDX! X-ray spectrometers. The investigation showed that the sample consists of a calcite matrix in which uranium is present in the form of separate inclusions. The diameter of U inclusions was less than 10 mm. Synchrotron radiation based X-ray fluorescence in confocal geometry ~confocal m-XRF! was used to determine the spatial distribution of elements in the particle. Three-dimensional reconstructions of the Ca, Cr,Mn, Fe, Zn, Sr, Ba, Pb, and U distributions were performed. The oxidation state of uranium in the different inclusions was determined by synchrotron radiation based X-ray absorption in confocal geometry ~confocal m-XANES!. The isotopic composition of uranium was measured by secondary ion mass spectrometry. The results revealed that uranium was depleted in 235U. Pu and other actinides were not detected.
JRC Directorate:Nuclear Safety and Security

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