Evidence for muon‐induced production of 10Be in near‐surface rocks from the Congo

Erik Thorson Brown, Didier L. Bourlès, Fabrice Colin, Grant M. Raisbeck, Françoise Yiou, Sophie Desgarceaux

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Distributions of 10Be in vein quartz from a lateritic weathering profile from the Congo provide evidence for significant in situ production of 10Be by reactions other than neutron‐induced spallation. After consideration of geomorphological and nuclear processes which might contribute to the observed depth variability, we conclude that cosmic ray muon‐induced reactions are the most likely mechanism, and that such reactions lead to 1% to 3% of 10Be production at the surface. This small muon‐induced component has only minor implications for the use of 10Be for quantification of exposure histories of surficial rocks. Nevertheless, the muogenic component has the potential to expand the utility of cosmogenic nuclides in examination of surficial processes, overcoming some of the limitations associated with the use of the neutron‐produced component.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)703-706
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 15 1995


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