Chemical methods for the use of niobium from pressure vessel cladding as a fast neutron dosimeter

Hari Karnani

Research output: Book/ReportReport


The steel samples from the cladding of a pressure vessel of an operating nuclear power reactor were obtained by scraping. The cladding material of the pressure vessel contained about 0.5 % niobium. It was desired to use the niobium as a dosimeter for estimating fast fluences at the pressure vessel. The weak radiation from the reaction product 93mNb cannot be measured in the presence of other elements and interfering activities. A method was developed to separate niobium from other metals present; the concentration and yield of niobium were determined spectrophotometrically. The irradiated niobium was electrodeposited from aqueous solutions on copper discs. The amount of the deposited niobium was determined by a radiochemical method which makes use of its own radioactivity - measured with a liquid scintillation counter - and the known starting mass of niobium. It was possible to determine the deposited niobium masses (5 to 200 microgram) with a desired degree of accuracy. The absolute emission rate of X-rays could then be measured without any self-absorption or interference from other activities. The mass of niobium on each preparate and its X-ray emission rate, later on, were used as basic experimental data for the estimation of last neutron doses at the pressure vessel.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEspoo
PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Number of pages44
ISBN (Print)951-38-2600-7
Publication statusPublished - 1986
MoE publication typeD4 Published development or research report or study

Publication series

SeriesValtion teknillinen tutkimuskeskus. Tiedotteita


  • nuclear reactors
  • fast neutrons
  • fluence
  • niobium
  • electrodeposition
  • pressure vessels
  • liquid scintilation counting


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