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Report No.

Comparison of ICP-MS and SIMS techniques for determining uranium isotope ratios in individual particles

Esaka, Fumitaka; Magara, Masaaki; Lee, C. G.; Sakurai, Satoshi; Usuda, Shigekazu; Shinohara, Nobuo

The determination of uranium isotope ratios in individual particles is of great importance for nuclear safeguards. In the present study, an analytical technique by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) with a desolvation sample introduction system was applied to isotope ratio analysis of individual uranium particles. In ICP-MS analysis of individual uranium particles with diameters ranging from 0.6 to 4.2 $$mu$$m in a standard reference material (NBL CRM U050), the use of the desolvation system for sample introduction improved the precision of $$^{234}$$U/$$^{238}$$U and $$^{236}$$U/$$^{238}$$U isotope ratios. The performance of ICP-MS with desolvation was compared with that of a conventionally used method, i.e., secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS). The analysis of test swipe samples taken at nuclear facilities implied that the performance of ICP-MS with desolvation was superior to that of SIMS in a viewpoint of accuracy, because the problems of agglomeration of uranium particles and molecular ion interferences by other elements could be avoided. These results indicated that ICP-MS with desolvation has an enough ability to become an effective tool for nuclear safeguards.



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Category:Chemistry, Analytical



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