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Development of Lead-210 Measurement in Peat Using Polonium Extraction. A Procedural Comparison

De Vleeschouwer, François and Sikorski, Jarosław and Fagel, Nathalie Development of Lead-210 Measurement in Peat Using Polonium Extraction. A Procedural Comparison. (2010) Geochronometria, 36. 1-8. ISSN 1733-8387

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.2478/v10003-010-0013-5

Abstract

Two chemical treatments for lead-210 measurement were compared on the sub-surface samples of a core from an ombrotrophic bog from East Belgium. The classical procedure involves a concentrated acid extraction of polonium. However, this treatment represents substantial health risks together with unknowns regarding both the degree of cleanliness and the Po extraction rate, and most importantly, is rather time consuming. We developed here an improved procedure involving an ash- ing step prior to acid extraction. This allows substantial improvements such as: 1/ the use of a rela- tively small amount of acid compared to the classical procedure and 2/ the substantial reduction of a total sample digestion time. Measurements of 210Pb concentrations were conducted by alpha spec- trometry. Results show a good agreement of unsupported 210Pb activity obtained for both procedures, although some unknowns remain concerning the adsorption of 210Po on the plastic test tube, the vola- tilization of a small amount of ash, or the absorption of alpha particle at the alpha source surface. This however should not affect the 210Pb measurement as all the samples are spiked prior to ashing (i.e. the recoveries are fully monitored). Through this study, we are suggesting researchers to follow this new procedure in order to increase safety, cleanliness, better recovery and substantial time gain.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:Thanks to De Gruyter Open editor. The original PDF of the article can be found at Geochronometria website : http://www.degruyter.com/view/j/geochr
HAL Id:hal-00987195
Audience (journal):International peer-reviewed journal
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:Other partners > Université de Liège (BELGIUM)
Other partners > Silesian University of Technology (POLAND)
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Deposited On:05 May 2014 14:19

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