Journal article

Etching of fission tracks in monazite: An experimental study

Sean Jones, Andy Gleadow, Barry Kohn, Steven M Reddy

Terra Nova | WILEY | Published : 2019


This study reports a range of etching and annealing experiments to establish the optimum conditions for the etching of fission tracks in monazite. The previously reported concentrated (12 M) HCl etchant at 90°C was found to cause grain loss from epoxy mounts and high degrees of grain corrosion, as did much longer etching times at lower temperatures. Using implanted Cf semi-tracks, a series of experiments were performed on internal prismatic faces of monazite-(Ce) crystals from the Palaeozoic Harcourt Granodiorite (Victoria, Australia) using an alternative 6 M HCl etchant, also at 90°C. Step-etch results show optimal etching at 60–90 min. Further, an isothermal annealing experiment illustrat..

View full abstract


Funding Acknowledgements

We thank Abaz Alimanovic for helpful conversations and for sourcing the different etching chemicals and Graham Hutchinson for electron microprobe analyses. The University of Melbourne thermochronology laboratory receives support under the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy AuScope programme. SJ also acknowledges funding from the Australian Government for an Australian Postgraduate Award (APA) and Melbourne University for a Baragwanath Trust Scholarship and Science Abroad Travel Scholarship (SATS). We are grateful to Cornelia Spiegel, Ewald Hejl and two other reviewers for their constructive comments and suggestions on an earlier draft of this work.