High-Precision Isotope Analysis Of Uranium And Thorium By Tims

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The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Yucca Mountain Project Branch laboratory in Denver, Colorado, conducts routine high-precision isotope analyses of uranium (U) and thorium (Th) using thermal ionization mass-spectrometry (TIMS). The measurements are conducted by a solid-source mass-spectrometer equipped with a Faraday multi-collector system and an energy filter in front of an active-film-type secondary electron multiplier (SEM). The abundance sensitivity of the instrument (signal at mass 237 over {sup 238}U in natural U) with the energy filter is {approx} 15 x 10{sup -9} and peak tails are reduced by a factor of {approx}100 relative to the Faraday cup measurements. Since instrument ... continued below

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Neymark, L.A. August 31, 2006.

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The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Yucca Mountain Project Branch laboratory in Denver, Colorado, conducts routine high-precision isotope analyses of uranium (U) and thorium (Th) using thermal ionization mass-spectrometry (TIMS). The measurements are conducted by a solid-source mass-spectrometer equipped with a Faraday multi-collector system and an energy filter in front of an active-film-type secondary electron multiplier (SEM). The abundance sensitivity of the instrument (signal at mass 237 over {sup 238}U in natural U) with the energy filter is {approx} 15 x 10{sup -9} and peak tails are reduced by a factor of {approx}100 relative to the Faraday cup measurements. Since instrument installation in April 2004, more than 500 rock and water samples have been analyzed in support of isotope-geochemical studies for the U.S. Department of Energy's Yucca Mountain Project. Isotope ratios of sub-nanogram to microgram U and Th samples are measured on graphite-coated single-filament and double-filament assemblies using zone-refined rhenium filaments. Ion beams less than 5 millivolt (mV) are measured with the SEM, which is corrected for non-linearity on the basis of measurements of National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) U-500 and 4321 B standards with ion beams ranging from 0.01 to 8 mV. Inter-calibration between the SEM and the Faraday multi-collector is performed for every mass cycle using a {approx}5 mV beam switched between Faraday cup and SEM ('bridging' technique), because SEM-Faraday inter-calibrations prior to the measurement failed to produce acceptable results. Either natural ({sup 235}U) or artificial ({sup 236}U, {sup 229}Th) isotopes were used for the bridging. Separate runs are conducted for minor isotopes using SEM only. These techniques result in high within-run precisions of <0.1 to 0.2 percent for {sup 234}U/{sup 238}U and 0.2 to 0.5 percent for {sup 230}Th/{sup 238}U.

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  • Report No.: NA
  • Grant Number: NA
  • DOI: 10.2172/894309 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 894309
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc886324

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  • August 31, 2006

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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  • Nov. 29, 2016, 12:36 p.m.

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Neymark, L.A. High-Precision Isotope Analysis Of Uranium And Thorium By Tims, report, August 31, 2006; Las Vegas, Nevada. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc886324/: accessed December 14, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.