• P-ISSN2233-4203
  • E-ISSN2093-8950

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  • P-ISSN 2233-4203
  • E-ISSN 2093-8950

Feasibility of Using Graphite Powder to Enhance Uranium Ion Intensity in Thermal Ionization Mass Spectrometry (TIMS)

Mass Spectrometry Letters, (P)2233-4203; (E)2093-8950
2016, v.7 no.4, pp.102-105
https://doi.org/10.5478/MSL.2016.7.4.102
Park Jeng-Ho (Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, University of Science and Technology)
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Abstract

This study explored the feasibility of using a carburization technique to enhance the ion intensity of isotopic analysis of ultra-trace levels of uranium using thermal ionization mass spectrometry (TIMS). Prior to fixing uranium samples on TIMS filaments, graphite powder suspended in nitric acid was deposited on rhenium filaments. We observed an enhancement of 238U+ intensity by a factor of two when carburization was used, and were able to roughly optimize the amount of graphite powder necessary for carburization. The positive shift in heating current when evaporating filaments upon carburization implies that uranium was chemically altered by carburization, when compared to normal fixation processes. The good agreement between our method and known standards down to an ultra-trace level shows that the proposed technique can be applied to isotopic uranium analysis down to abundances of ~10 pg.

keywords
carburization thermal ionization mass spectrometry (TIMS) uranium nuclear safeguards


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Submission Date
2016-11-24
Revised Date
2016-12-08
Accepted Date
2016-12-08
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