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An analytical challenge to use a number of characteristics called nuclear signatures is being addressed. Nuclear signatures are present in nature not only as the far remnants of natural processes but also as the results of known human nuclear activities (anthropogenic). Because they result from nuclear processes as in star formation processes, the signatures are isotopic rather than elemental. They can therefore be investigated far better for both stable and radioactive isotopes and subsequently exploited by isotopic measurement methods (radiometric and mass spectrometric). An elemental or chemical signature may be defined as a set of element concentrations which indicate that a material has been produced by a specific natural or anthropogenic process.

Additional information

Authors: DE BIÉVRE P, JRC Geel (BE);WELLUM R, JRC Geel (BE);PERRIN R, International Atomic Energy Agency, Safeguards Analytical Laboratory, Seibersdorf (AT)
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: ESARDA-INMM Workshop on Science and Modern Technology for Safeguards, Arona (IT), October 28-31, 1996
Availability: Available from (1) as Paper EN 40233 ORA
Record Number: 199710012 / Last updated on: 1997-02-03
Original language: en
Available languages: en