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Abstract

Methodologies based on secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) for isotopic measurements in nuclear forensic applications relevant to the age determination of Pu particles and isotopic composition of oxygen for geolocation assignment is described. For the age determination of Pu particles, a relative sensitivity factor (RSF) to correct for the different ionization efficiencies of U and Pu, was obtained by analyzing standard Pu materials with known ages. An RSF of 2.41 +/- 0.05 was obtained for PuO(2) form measurements on samples with different Pu/U ratios. In a sample of known origin, using this RSF value, the age calculated from the {238}Pu/{234}U and {240}Pu/{236}U ratios agreed well with the reported age of 2.3 years. For geolocation assignment, a new approach based on the measurement of differences in the natural abundance of {18}O and {16}O isotopes and their ratio was developed. The instrumental mass discrimination of the {18}O/{16}O ration was determined using three O-isotope samples of different composition. The measured precision (the standard error of a population of 100 cycles) obtained for the oxygen isotopic measurement on the samples was typically +/- 1.1 per thousand.

Additional information

Authors: TAMBORINI G ET AL, JRC, Institute for Transuranium Elements, Karlsruhe (DE)
Bibliographic Reference: An oral report given at: The 17th European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition. Held in: Munich (DE), 22-26 October 2001
Record Number: 200114137 / Last updated on: 2001-12-21
Category: PUBLICATION
Original language: en
Available languages: en