Investigation of physical, mechanical and gamma-ray shielding properties using ceramic tiles incorporated with powdered lead oxide

Document Type



Standard ceramic tiles doped with powdered, micro-sized lead oxide (PbO) were manufactured with weight fractions (2.5%, 5%, 7.5% and 10%) and investigated for γ-ray shielding ability. Several methods were used to characterize the newly fabricated ceramic samples. These included Fourier transform infrared spectrophotometer (FT-IR), X-ray diffraction (XRD), thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA), energy dispersive X-ray (EDX), scanning electron microscope (SEM) and high-resolution transmission electron microscope (HR-TEM). The mechanical properties of assembled ceramic composites were examined and their modulus of rupture (MOR) was calculated. Results revealed that the values of MOR varied between 1.884 and 2.158 MPa, as the content of PbO increased from 0.0 to 10.0 wt% in the ceramic body. Physical properties, such as density and percentage of water adsorption, were determined. To evaluate γ-ray attenuation coefficients (μm) of the investigated samples, different energies in the range of 59.53–1332.50 keV were applied and a NaI detector was used to measure photon intensities, as a function of the weight percentage of PbO. Confirmation of the accuracy of these results was performed, when a comparison was made with the theoretical values obtained from the XCOM simulation code. Two more parameters were tested to ensure the shielding capabilities of the new composites, namely the half value layer (HVL) and the mean free path (MFP). These values were calculated to reveal that the ceramic composite containing 10 wt% PbO exhibited the highest μm and lowest MFP and HVL values of all other tested composites. The outlined results confirm the significant improvement in γ-ray shielding properties of ceramic tiles as the wt% of PbO increased from 0.0 to 10.0 wt%.

Publication Date



Faculty of Dentistry

Subject Area

Physical Sciences, General Chemical Engineering, General Materials Science

Indexed in Scopus


Indexed in Web Of Science







Ceramic tiles, Gamma rays shielding, Mass attenuation coefficients., Micro-sized lead oxide, Modulus of rupture