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Abstract  

A method for the separation and determination of total and isotopic uranium and plutonium by ICP/MS was developed for IAEA samples on cellulose-based media. Preparation of the IAEA samples involved a series of redox chemistries and separations using TRU® resin (Eichrom). The sample introduction system, an APEX nebulizer (Elemental Scientific, Inc.), provided enhanced nebulization for a several-fold increase in sensitivity and reduction in background. Application of mass bias (ALPHA) correction factors greatly improved the precision of the data. By combining the enhancements of chemical separation, instrumentation and data processing, detection levels for uranium and plutonium approached high attogram levels.

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Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Authors: M. Douglas, J. Friese, L. Greenwood, O. Farmer, M. Thomas, T. Maiti, E. Finn, S. Garofoli, P. Gassman, M. Huff, S. Schulte, S. Smith, K. Thomas, and P. Bachelor

Abstract  

Quantitative measurement of fission and activation products resulting from neutron irradiation of fissile materials is of interest for applications in environmental monitoring, nuclear waste management, and national security. Based on established separation processes involving co-precipitation, solvent extraction, and ion-exchange and extraction chromatography, we have optimized a proposed sequence of separation steps to allow for the timely quantification of analytes of interest. We have recently evaluated this scheme using an irradiated sample to examine the adequacy of separations for measurement of desired analytes by gamma spectrometry. Here we present the radiochemical separations utilized and the yields and purity obtained.

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