Effect of fast neutron, gamma-ray, and combined radiations on the thermal decomposition of ammonium perchlorate single crystals
The thermal decomposition kinetics have been determined for ammonium perchlorate crystals subjected to a fast neutron irradiation or to a fast neutron irradiation followed by a gamma-ray irradiation. Qualitatively, the radiation induced changes are similar to those obtained in this and in previous studies, with samples exposed only to gamma rays. The induction period is shortened and the rate constants, obtained from an Avrami-Erofeyev kinetic analysis, are modified. The acceleratory period constant increases and the decay period constant decreases. When compared on an equal deposited energy basis, the fast neutron induced changes are appreciably larger than the gamma-ray induced changes. Some, or all, of the fast neutron induced effects might be attributable to the introduction of localized regions of concentrated radiation damage (``spikes'') by lattice atom recoils which become thermal decomposition sites when the crystals are heated.