K.J. Glennon, J.M. Osborn, J.D. Burns, E.D. Kitcher, S.S. Chirayath, and C.M. Folden III, “Measuring Key Sm Isotope Ratios in Irradiated UO2 for use in Plutonium Discrimination Nuclear Forensics”, Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry, 320, 2 (2019).
As part of an experimental validation of a nuclear forensics methodology for Pu source reactor-type discrimination, destructive analysis has been performed on two irradiated UO2 pellets with different irradiation histories. Analysis has focused on measuring key Sm fission product isotope ratios used in a previously published maximum likelihood methodology to determine the most likely irradiation history of the pellets. A total of 21 Sm isotope ratios were measured within the irradiated pellets, and generally agreed within 20% of the irradiations as simulated using the Monte Carlo Radiation Transport and material depletion code, MCNP6. Results indicate the chosen approach can accurately measure the isotope ratios within 5% experimental error.