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A Simple Kinetic Model for the Alpha Radiolysis of Water Sorbed on NpO2

Alan S. Icenhour, Louis M. Toth, Robert M. Wham, R. R. Brunson

Nuclear Technology

Volume 146 / Number 2 / May 2004 / Pages 206-209


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Alpha radiolysis experiments have been performed on NpO2 that contains sorbed moisture. A high dose rate to the sample was achieved by spiking it with ~7000 ppm 244Cm during preparation. Pressure monitoring of sample containers showed that a low, steady-state pressure plateau is reached. This plateau indicates a situation in which the forward reaction (i.e., radiolysis of water) is equal to the back reaction (i.e., the reformation of H2O). In this technical note, a simple kinetic model that can be used for predicting steady-state pressures under practical conditions is described.

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