What radioisotope is used in geological dating

10-Jan-2015 08:02

The two main techniques are Thermal Neutron Capture (TNC) and Neutron Inelastic Scattering (NIS).

TNC occurs immediately after a low-energy neutron is absorbed by a nucleus, NIS takes place instantly when a fast neutron collides with a nucleus.

Most commercial analysers use californium-252 neutron sources together with sodium iodide detectors and are mainly sensitive to TNC reactions.

Other use Am-Be-241 sources and bismuth germanate detectors, which register both TNC and NIS.

A particular application of NIS is where a probe containing a neutron source can be lowered into a bore hole where the radiation is scattered by collisions with surrounding soil.

Nuclear techniques are increasingly used in science, industry and environmental management.

The continuous analysis and rapid response of nuclear techniques, many involving radioisotopes, mean that reliable flow and analytic data can be constantly available.

This results in reduced costs with increased product quality.

Neutrons from a research reactor can interact with atoms in a sample causing the emission of gamma rays which, when analysed for characteristic energies and intensity, will identify the types and quantities of elements present.

NIS reactions are particularly useful for elements such as C, O, Al & Si which have a low neutron capture cross section.

Nuclear techniques are increasingly used in science, industry and environmental management.

The continuous analysis and rapid response of nuclear techniques, many involving radioisotopes, mean that reliable flow and analytic data can be constantly available.

This results in reduced costs with increased product quality.

Neutrons from a research reactor can interact with atoms in a sample causing the emission of gamma rays which, when analysed for characteristic energies and intensity, will identify the types and quantities of elements present.

NIS reactions are particularly useful for elements such as C, O, Al & Si which have a low neutron capture cross section.

Such equipment is used for a variety on on-line and on-belt analysis in the cement, mineral and coal industries.