Department of Physics and Astronomy: Publications and Other Research


Date of this Version



Journal of Luminescence 139 (2013) 125–131


This document is a U.S. government work and is not subject to copyright in the United States.


Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) is used to identify the electron and hole traps responsible for thermoluminescence (TL) peaks occurring near 100 and 200 C in copper-doped lithium tetraborate (Li2B4O7) crystals. As-grown crystals have Cu+ and Cu2+ ions substituting for lithium and have Cu+ ions at interstitial sites. All of the substitutional Cu2+ ions in the as-grown crystals have an adjacent lithium vacancy and give rise to a distinct EPR spectrum. Exposure to ionizing radiation at room temperature produces a second and different Cu2+ EPR spectrum when a hole is trapped by substitutional Cu+ ions that have no nearby defects. These two Cu2+ trapped-hole centers are referred to as Cu2+-VLi and Cu2+active, respectively. Also during the irradiation, two trapped-electron centers in the form of interstitial Cu0 atoms are produced when interstitial Cu+ ions trap electrons. They are observed with EPR and are labeled Cu0A and Cu0B. When an irradiated crystal is warmed from 25 to 150 C, the Cu2+active centers have a partial decay step that correlates with the TL peak near 100 C. The concentrations of Cu0A and Cu0B centers, however, increase as the crystal is heated through this range. As the crystal is futher warmed between 150 and 250 C, the EPR signals from the Cu2+active hole centers and Cu0A and Cu0B electron centers decay simultaneously. This decay step correlates with the intense TL peak near 200 C.