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  • Author or Editor: K. G. W. Inn x
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Abstract  

We have developed a sequential extraction technique for determining the geochemical partitioning of Am, Pu, and U in soils and sediments. Stable element analyses were combined with radiometric measurements to determine the most probable geochemical host phases of these actinides in reference sediment IAEA-135.241 Am results indicate an association with carbonate minerals and organic matter. The extraction profile of238U was similar to that of refractory elements Al, Ti, and K.239/240Pu data suggest a fractionation of Pu into Fe-bearing phases of varying solubility. The reproducibility of the method was quite good (replicates agreed to within 10% at a 95% confidence level).

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Thermal ionization mass spectrometry (TIMS) is an effective method for isotopic and ultra-sensitivity determination of plutonium. This project aims at improving the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) TIMS system sensitivity for the analysis of plutonium from environmental samples. The TIMS detection limits for direct, electrodeposition, and resin bead source loading techniques were determined by systematically varying the amount of plutonium loaded on the rhenium filament. It has been shown in our preliminary work that the resin bead could produce a stable TIMS ion beam for as long as 6 h period with »108 Pu atoms loaded onto a single resin bead.

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Summary  

Elérhetoség

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Summary  

A Radioanalytical Emergency Procedures Manual Database (REPMD) will be an important tool to assist laboratories preparing for emergency response to a sudden release of radioactivity into the environment. The collection and systematic organization of existing sampling, screening and radioanalytical methods will enable laboratories to assess the appropriate methodologies for their use. REPMD is intended to be flexible, searchable, and interactive to accommodate a wide range of available techniques while being protected from unauthorized modifications. Website access by the world-wide scientific community will make the database a foundation for international comparison. The information in the database will also serve as a comprehensive and periodically updated source of methods and procedures suitable for training programs and rapid reference.

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Summary  

Minerals in the soil range from those that easily weather to those that are very resistant to the weathering processes. The minerals used in this study are referred to as “resistates” because of their resistance to natural weathering processes.1 It is also known that there are some resistate minerals that have a tendency to contain uranium and thorium within their crystal structure. These resistates can contain as much as 15-20% of the total uranium and thorium present in the soil.9 Do resistates dissolve in acids, particularly in the HF/HNO3 procedures, if not what can be done to the HF/HNO3 process to dissolve more of the resistate minerals? How would these acid techniques compare to the fusion method used for mineral dissolution? Could the resistate minerals contain considerable amount of uranium and thorium? These were the questions addressed in this research. The comparative data indicate that the use of H2SO4 in the dissolution process resulted in ~25% overall increase in the minerals dissolving therefore resulting in a higher yield of extracted uranium and thorium.

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Summary  

As a follow up to the initial 1998 intercomparison study, a second study was initiated in 2001 as part of the ongoing evaluation of the capabilities of various ultra-sensitive methods to analyze 239Pu in urine samples. The initial study1 was sponsored by the Department of Energy, Office of International Health Programs to evaluate and validate new technologies that may supersede the existing fission tract analysis (FTA) method for the analysis of 239Pu in urine at the µBq/l level. The ultra-sensitive techniques evaluated in the second study included accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) by LLNL, thermal ionization mass spectrometry (TIMS) by LANL and FTA by the University of Utah. Only the results for the mass spectrometric methods will be presented. For the second study, the testing levels were approximately 4, 9, 29 and 56 µBq of 239Pu per liter of synthetic urine. Each test sample also contained 240Pu at a 240Pu/239Pu atom ratio of ~0.15 and natural uranium at a concentration of 50 µBq/ml. From the results of the two studies, it can be inferred that the best performance at the µBq level is more laboratory specific than method specific. The second study demonstrated that LANL-TIMS and LLNL-AMS had essentially the same quantification level for both isotopes. Study results for bias and precision and acceptable performance compared to ANSI N13.30 and ANSI N42.22 have been compiled.

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