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Transuranium Analytical Laboratory

Transuranium Analytical Laboratory

The Transuranium Analytical Laboratory (TAL) is located within ORNL’s Radiochemical Engineering Development Center (REDC) which serves as the production, storage, and distribution center for the heavy-element research program of the U.S. Department of Energy.  The TAL provides uniquely specialized chemical and radiochemical protocols and analyses on a wide variety of products produced by the REDC with special emphasis on the production of transcurium isotopes. Titrations, dissolutions, separations, and dilutions of high activity samples are completed in hotcells and gloveboxes in preparation for analytical radiochemistry determinations completed at the TAL in support of the REDC’s mission.  The TAL's radiation measurements includes high and low level alpha/beta counting, liquid scintillation counting for beta activities, alpha spectrometry, gamma spectrometry, and gross neutron counting as well as radioisotopes and fission products by ICPMS.

The TAL leads the analytical effort in support of ORNL’s production of Pu-238 for NASA, the Bk-249/Cf-252 Production Campaigns for the DOE Isotope Program, ORNL’s U-233 Recovery Program, and ORNL’s Spent Nuclear Fuel Studies Research.

REDC processing hot cell at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory

The inside of the wet hot cell at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where scientists use nitric acid and columns of silica glass to remove dangerously radioactive material that accrues in neptunium—plutonium's precursor—during shipping from Idaho National Laboratory.