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  • 1 Dalhousie University Neutron Activation Laboratory Department of Geology B3H 3J5 Halifax (N.S.) Canada
  • | 2 Massachusetts Institute of Technology Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences 02139 Cambridge Ma U. S. A.
  • | 3 University of Guelph Department of Physics NIG 2W1 Guelph Ont Canada
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The presence of uranium in a sample enhances the true values of La, Ce, Nd, Sm determined by INAA if appropriate corrections are not made for the interference. The enhancement of the true values comes about because the (n, γ) activation products of these elements, viz.140La,141Ce,147Nd,153Sm, are also produced from the fission of235U (∼0.72% natural isotopic abundance) even when La, Ce, Nd, Sm are totally absent in the given sample. In a 5 hour irradiation 1 μg of U is found to be equal to 0.28 μg of Ce and 0.23 μg of Nd while the equivalent La is found to be dependent upon the delay from end of irradiation to sample counting time. A numerical procedure is given to correct for these interferences. Spectral interferences from fission and (n, γ) β products of uranium in the determination of other trace elements by INAA is also investigated. Uranium is found to be determined best using the 278 keV gamma-ray of239Np.