Porous ZrC-carbon microspheres as potential insoluble target matrices for production of188W/188Re
New microsphere sorbents are reported, which could find application in demanding radiation environments and especially as targets for the production of nuclear medicines by neutron irradiation. An easily-synthesized Zr anionic complex was introduced into quaternary amine-functionalised polystyrene-divinylbenzene-based anion-exchange resins by batch adsorption. Upon carbothermal reduction, the precursors were converted to porous carbon matrices containing particles of ZrC and ZrO2polymorphs. The most phase-pure material, ZrAX-1, possessed high surface area, multi-scale porosity and high mechanical strength. Adsorption of Re and W was investigated and its possible deployment as a reusable host for the production of188W/188Re is discussed.