Cation-exchange Column for Th

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The principles of the generator are as follows:

  • Uranium oxide (238U), where 234Th is in radioactive equilibrium, is dissolved in hydrochloric acid and loaded onto a cation exchange column. The negative uranium complex will not be retained on the column while thorium, which is still on cationic form, will be fixed:
Uranium chloride complexes.jpg
  • After a while, the grown-in protactinium is complexed by addition of citric acid. The complex will not fix to the column, and will leave the column in the eluate while thorium is still fixed on the column:
    Protactinium citrix acid complexes.jpg