Diamond Light Source is the UK’s synchrotron. It works like a giant microscope, harnessing the power of electrons to produce bright light that scientists can use to study anything from materials structures to microorganism to radionuclides in soil and wastes. The Diamond synchrotron is half a kilometre in circumference and designed to produce very intense beams of X-rays, infrared and ultraviolet light.
The ISIS pulsed neutron and muon source at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory is a world-leading centre for research in the physical and life sciences. ISIS produces beams of neutrons and muons that allow scientists to study materials at the atomic level using a suite of instruments, often described as ‘super-microscopes’. It supports a national and international community who use neutrons and muons for research in physics, chemistry, materials science, geology, engineering and biology.
A core of radioactive, coated concrete, from the decommissioned spent nuclear fuel cooling pond at the Hunterston-A nuclear site (Ayrshire, UK) has provided a unique opportunity to study radionuclides within a real-world system.
X-ray spectroscopy techniques at Diamond have given scientists a new insight into the behaviour of uranium during deep disposal of radioactive waste.
Debbie Jones, Michael Andrews, Adam Swinburne and Louise Natrajan have published an open access edge article in Chemical Science: "Fluorescence spectroscopy and microscopy as tools for monitoring redox transformations of uranium in biological systems."