Radioactive Bimetallic Gold-Silver Nanoparticles Production in a Research Nuclear Reactor


Synthesis of radioactive, bimetallic nanoparticles was successfully accomplished using the Missouri S&T research nuclear reactor (MSTR). Aqueous solutions of 2 mM gold chloride and 2 mM silver nitrate were prepared and mixed with a solution of 1 mM polyvinylpyrrolidone and 60 mM of 2-propanol. Four different samples with volume ratios of 70/30, 50/50, 30/70, and 0/100 of Au/Ag were irradiated at a reactor thermal power of 10 kW for 3 min. The morphology, crystal structure, and chemical composition of the resulting nanoparticles were characterized with Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), Gatan Microscopy Suite Software and the Java-based image-processing program ImageJ. It was found that the structure obtained depended on the composition of the irradiated sample, with production of core-shell and alloyed nanoparticles obtained at different conditions.


Nuclear Engineering and Radiation Science

Research Center/Lab(s)

Center for High Performance Computing Research


This work was partially supported by the NRC under grants NRC- HQ-12-G-38-0075, NRC-HQ-13-G-38-0008, and PPR-NRC-38-10- 966. The authors are grateful to William Bonzer and the MSTR staff for assistance with experimental irradiation. Also, the authors want to thank the Materials Research Center (MRC) at Missouri S&T for their support.

Keywords and Phrases

Bimetallic nanoparticles; Nanoparticle synthesis; Nuclear reactor; Radioactive nanoparticles; Radiolysis

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)


Document Type

Article - Journal

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Publication Date

01 Aug 2018