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  • Chemical composition of inhalable MOX powders prepared according to a SOLGEL process: An energy dispersive X-ray analysis of individual particles


The homogeneity of inhalable (U,Pu)O(2) mixed oxide (MOX) powders made according to an experimental SOLGEL process by co-precipitation of soluble forms of U and Pu has been characterized. These powders contained 4.4% by weight of Pu. In order to study inhaled particles, rats were exposed to the MOX aerosol, and alveolar macrophages were extracted by pulmonary lavage 3 days later. Chemical analyses were performed on entire cells, using a scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM) at 200 kV interfaced with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (EDS). The raster analysis showed the particles contained 6.6% Pu (sd=0.96, n=20). The homogeneity was confirmed in a range of a few nanometers in each particle analysed by element mapping using a 7nm nanoprobe. These results demonstrate that chemical composition of the SOLGEL powders is homogeneous enough, so that they could be used as reference compounds for the toxicological studies after inhalation exposure to industrial MOX powder.

Additional information

Authors: MASSIOT P, CEA/DSV/DRR/SRCA/LRT, Bruyères-le-Châtel (FR);LEPRINCE B, CEA/DSV/DRR/SRCA/LRT, Bruyères-le-Châtel (FR);LIZON C, CEA/DSV/DRR/SRCA/LRT, Bruyères-le-Châtel (FR);RATEAU G, CEA/DSV/DRR/SRCA/LRT, Bruyères-le-Châtel (FR);FRITSCH P, CEA/DSV/DRR/SRCA/LRT, Bruyères-le-Châtel (FR);RICHTER K, JRC Karlsruhe (DE)
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: Actinides '97, Baden-Baden (DE), 21-26 September 1997
Availability: Available from (1) as Paper EN 41106 ORA
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