Development of the k-based cyclic neutron activation analysis for short-lived radionuclides

Dung, Ho; Blaauw, Menno; Beasley, Daniel; Freitas, Maria
February 2012
Journal of Radioanalytical & Nuclear Chemistry;Feb2012, Vol. 291 Issue 2, p485
Academic Journal
The k-based cyclic neutron activation analysis ( k-CNAA) technique has been studied to explore the applicability at the Portuguese research reactor (RPI). In particular, for the determination of elements which form short-lived radionuclides, particularly fluorine (F, 11.16 s half-life) and selenium (Se, 17.36 s half-life) in polymer, biological and environmental samples. The detection limits obtained for F and Se were about 50 and 0.01 mg kg, respectively, in the investigated materials. The timing parameters for the procedure were 10 to 20 s for irradiation, 5 s decay, 10 to 20 s counting, 5 s waiting and performed with eight cycles. The k-IAEA program was modified to use millisecond time resolution for irradiation, decay and counting times as needed for interpreting k-CNAA data in terms of concentration, accuracy and detection limit. The quality control of the procedure was performed by preparing a standard solution containing fluorine with different contents as well as using the certified reference materials containing selenium from which the bias between the results and the certified values were within 15% for most elements at the investigated content ranges. The analytical results for several other elements producing short-lived or detectable radionuclides, e.g., Al, Ca, Cl, Cu, Dy, I, Mg, Mn, Ti, and V were also obtained by the k-CNAA procedure with accuracy within 12%.


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