Stable and selective scintillating anion-exchange sensors for quantification of 99TcO4- in natural freshwaters

Ayman F. Seliman, Kerttuli Helariutta, Szymon J. Wiktorowicz, Heikki Tenhu, Risto Harjula

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


New dual functionality scintillating anion-exchange resins were developed for selective determination of 99TcO4- in various natural freshwater samples. Stable scintillating particles were formed by preparing the vinyl monomer 2-[4-(4'-vinylbiphenylyl)]-5-(4-tert-butylphenyl)-1,3,4-oxadiazole (vPBD), starting with the commercial organic flour TBut-PBD and its subsequent copolymerization with styrene, divinylbenzene, and p-chloromethylstyrene mixture. To integrate the radiochemical separation and radiometric detection steps within the same bead, the chloromethyl groups of the scintillating resins were subjected to amination reactions with dioctylamine (DOA) and trioctylamine (TOA). On-line quantification of 99TcO4- was achieved by packing the scintillating anion-exchange resin into Teflon tubing for quantification by a flow scintillation analyzer (FSA). The two functionalized resins were selective for pertechnetate over the common anions in natural freshwaters, especially Cl- and SO42- with up to 1000ppm and with up to 10ppm I- and Cr2O72-. The uptake efficiency of the TOA sensor decreased from 97.88% to 85.08% in well water and river water, respectively, while the counting efficiency was almost constant (69.50%). The DOA performance showed lower efficiency in the two water types relative to TOA. On the other hand, the DOA sensor could be regenerated by 5M HNO3 for reuse at least four times without losing its chemical or optical performance. The detection limit was 1.45Bq which could be achieved by loading 45mL from well and tap water containing the maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 99Tc (33Bq/L).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)156-164
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Environmental Radioactivity
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2013
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • TcO
  • Flow cell
  • Freshwaters
  • Scintillating sensor


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