Separation of bismuth-210 and polonium-210 from aqueous solutions by spontaneous adsorption on copper foils
A description is given of factors controlling the adsorption of trace amounts of radioactive bismuth and polonium from aqueous solution on to thin copper foils. Optimum conditions are defined for the selective and quantitative adsorption of bismuth-210 and polonium-210 from aqueous solution and for a subsequent desorption process to give separation of the extracted bismuth and polonium. The method is demonstrated to be suitable for the preparation of thin sources for α-spectroscopy and for analysis of bismuth-210 and polonium-210 in marine sediments. The kinetics of the absorption and desorption processes are briefly discussed.