Conditions Extrêmes et Matériaux : Haute Température et Irradiation
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2016

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R.Mohun, L.Desgranges, J.Léchelle, P.Simon, G.Guimbretière, A.Canizarès, F.Duval, C.Jegou, M.Magnin, N.Clavier, N.Dacheux, C.Valot, R.Vauchy, 'Charged defects during alpha-irradiation of actinide oxides as revealed by Raman and luminescence spectroscopy', Nucl. Instr. Meth. Phys. Res. B 374 67-70 (2016) doi:10.1016/j.nimb.2015.08.003

We have recently evidenced an original Raman signature of alpha irradiation-induced defects in UO2. In this study, we aim to determine whether the same signature also exists in different actinide oxides, namely ThO2 and PuO2. Sintered UO2 and ThO2 were initially irradiated with 21 MeV He2+ ions using a cyclotron device and were subjected to an in situ luminescence experiment followed by Raman analysis. In addition, a PuO2 sample that has previously accumulated self-irradiation damage due to alpha particles was investigated only by Raman measurement. Results obtained for the initially white ThO2 showed that a blue color appeared in the irradiated areas as well as luminescence signals during irradiation. However, Raman spectroscopic analysis showed the absence of Raman signature in ThO2. In contrast, the irradiated UO2 and PuO2 confirmed the presence of the Raman signature but no luminescence peaks were observed. The proposed mechanism involves electronic defects in ThO2, while a coupling between electronic defects and phonons is required to explain the Raman spectra for UO2 and PuO2.