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Thin crystals of rutile, brookite, and anatase were irradiated in-situ with 1.0 MeV Kr using the IVEM-TANDEM facility. Synthetic rutile and cassisterite (SnO2, rutile structure) remained crystalline up to 5 × 1015 ion cm-2 at 50 K. Natural brookite and anatase with low impurity levels became amorphous at 8.1 ± 1.8 × 1014 and 2.3 ± 0.2 × 1014 ions cm-2, respectively, at 50 K. Irradiation at higher temperature revealed Tc = 170 K for brookite and 242 K for anatase. Natural rutile with about 2 wt% impurities became amorphous at 9.4 ± 1.8 × 1014 ions cm-2 at 50 K and has a Tc = 207 K. The available data reveal both a structural effect in the polymorphs with low levels of chemical impurities and a chemical effect in natural rutile specimens containing up to about 1.7 wt% impurities.
Polished tiles (7×7×2 mm3) of Nd-bearing zirconolite were fabricated and then some were irradiated on both large faces with 3 MeV or 2 MeV Au2+ ions (total fluence of ≥ 1 × 1015 ions/cm2) in order to render the zirconolite amorphous and so simulate displacement damage caused by alpha decay. Both the irradiated and non-irradiated tiles were then subjected to static dissolution tests in 0.01M nitric solution (pH2) at 90 C, for periods of 0–1, 1–7, 7–14 and 14–28 days. It was found that radiation damage did not affect the dissolution rate of zirconolite as indicated by the elemental leach rates of Nd, Ti, Ca and Al. The results of solution analyses are consistent with those obtained from X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) in that the Ca, Nd, Ti and Al concentrations in the top surface layer (< 5 nm) all decreased with respect to that of Zr after dissolution testing, and the leached surface composition of the non-irradiated zirconolite is very similar to that of the two irradiated specimens. The implications of these results are discussed in the context of previous work.
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