Technetium-99 Analysis using Extraction Chromatography

1.0 Scope and Application

This method is used to analyze technetium-99 (99Tc) in up to 1-L aqueous samples under neutral or dilute (£0.1 M) nitric acid conditions. Dissolved salts in the aqueous matrix are tolerated; however dissolution of particulate matter is not addressed. The method uses extraction chromatography with TEVA•Spec® Eichrom resin. It is fairly rapid and results in relatively little waste. Detection limits obtainable are dependent on the subsequent measuring techniques, but are on the order of 0.04 Bq/L (1 pCi/L). The total time of sample analysis is approximately 2 days for eight samples, with an estimated hands-on time of 8 h, including data reduction.

2.0 Summary of Method

The sample is heated with H2O2 to oxidize all technetium to pertechnetate. The aqueous sample, with acid concentration less than or equal to 0.1 M HNO3, is then passed through TEVA•Spec® resin where TcO4– is strongly absorbed. The column is washed with water or up to 50 mL of 1 M HNO3. The resin can then be transferred to a liquid scintillation counting (LSC) vial and mixed with Insta-Gel for subsequent analysis by LSC. Alternatively, the technetium can be stripped from the resin with 11 M HNO3 for inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) analysis.

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