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 Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis Laboratories - Comparative Method


Nuclear radiation produced by activated products is measured by high-resolution gamma spectrometers, including high purity germanium detectors coupled to pre-amplifiers, amplifiers and multichannel analysers.

The comparative instrumental neutron activation analysis method of CTN/IST allows the determination of 30 chemical elements (Na, K, Fe, Sc, Mn, Cr, Co, Zn, Ga, As, Br, Rb, Zr, Sb, Cs, Ba, La, Ce, Nd, Sm, Eu, Tb, Dy, Yb, Lu, Hf, Ta, W, Th and U) with high precision and accuracy in geologic, environmental and biological samples, in samples from cultural heritage (archaeological ceramic and raw materials, monuments stones, outcrops of potential raw material, etc). Besides, it’s also determined by INAA the Au contents (in sediment samples) and Cu, Ge, Ni, Ir and Au (in meteorites). Some synthetic materials (like glass or polyethylene) are also analyzed in INAA laboratory.


Equipment available in the gamma spectrometry laboratory:

• Four high purity Ge detectors:
      - 3 of high energy (CANBERRA GC3019 – 5Kv; GC4018 – 3Kv; GC3518 – 3Kv)
      - 1 of low energy (CANBERRA GL3825L – 4Kv)
• Two amplifiers – CANBERRA 2020
• Two amplifiers – CANBERRA 2022
• One amplifier CANBERRA 2026
• Two high tension sources – ORTEC 459 (0 – 5Kv)
• One high tension source – ORTEC 659 (0 – 5Kv)
• Two high tension sources – CANBERRA 3106D (0 – 5Kv)


Panoramic view of one of the gamma spectrometry laboratory


• Sample Changer Gamma Analyst:

      - 1 integrated system DSA 2000/A CANBERRA 3106 (0-5 Kv)
      - 1 CANBERRA detector BE 3830 – 5 Kv

Picture2a  Picture2b


Gamma spectrometer with a high purity Ge detector and a automatic sample changer (Gamma Analyst - CANBERRA)*


* Equipment funded by FCT – Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia - National Plan for Scientific Re-equipment (Plano Nacional de Re-equipamento Científico). Project: REEQ/590/CTE/2005. 


Equipment access: 

Available for the scientific community.


Researcher responsible for the laboratories: 

Maria Isabel Prudêncio


Maria Isabel Prudêncio ()

                  Rosa Marques ()