Report on 240Am(n,x) surrogate cross section test measurement

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The main goal of the test measurement was to determine the feasibility of the {sup 243}Am(p,t) reaction as a surrogate for {sup 240}Am(n,f). No data cross section data exists for neutron induced reactions on {sup 240}Am; the half-life of this isotope is only 2.1 days making direct measurements difficult, if not impossible. The 48-hour experiment was conducted using the STARS/LIBERACE experimental facility located at the 88 Inch Cyclotron at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in August 2011. A description of the experiment and results is given. The beam energy was initially chosen to be 39 MeV in order to measure an ... continued below

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Ressler, J J; Burke, J T; Gostic, J; Bleuel, D; Escher, J E; Henderson, R A et al. February 1, 2012.

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The main goal of the test measurement was to determine the feasibility of the {sup 243}Am(p,t) reaction as a surrogate for {sup 240}Am(n,f). No data cross section data exists for neutron induced reactions on {sup 240}Am; the half-life of this isotope is only 2.1 days making direct measurements difficult, if not impossible. The 48-hour experiment was conducted using the STARS/LIBERACE experimental facility located at the 88 Inch Cyclotron at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in August 2011. A description of the experiment and results is given. The beam energy was initially chosen to be 39 MeV in order to measure an equivalent neutron energy range from 0 to 20 MeV. However, the proton beam was not stopped in the farady cup and the beam was deposited in the surrounding shielding material. The shielding material was not conductive, and a beam current, needed for proper tuning of the beam as well as experimental monitoring, could not be read. If the {sup 240}Am(n,f) surrogate experiment is to be run at LBNL, simple modifications to the beam collection site will need to be made. The beam energy was reduced to 29 MeV, which was within an energy regime of prior experiments and tuning conditions at STARS/LIBERACE. At this energy, the beam current was successfully tuned and measured. At 29 MeV, data was collected with both the {sup 243}Am and {sup 238}U targets. An example particle identification plot is shown in Fig. 1. The triton-fission coincidence rate for the {sup 243}Am target and {sup 238}U target were measured. Coincidence rates of 0.0233(1) cps and 0.150(6) cps were observed for the {sup 243}Am and {sup 238}U targets, respectively. The difference in count rate is largely attributed to the available target material - the {sup 238}U target contains approximately 7 times more atoms than the {sup 243}Am. A proton beam current of {approx}0.7 nA was used for measurements on both targets. Assuming a full experimental run under similar conditions, an estimate for the run time needed was made. Figure 2 shows the number of days needed as a function of acceptable uncertainty for a measurement of 1-20 MeV equivalent neutron energy, binned into 200 keV increments. A 5% measurement will take 3 days for U, but 20 days for Am. It may be difficult to be the sole user of the LBNL cyclotron, or another facility, for such an extended period. However, a 10% measurement will take 19 hours for U, and 5 days for Am. Such a run period is more reasonable and will allow for the first ever measurement of the {sup 240}Am(n,f) cross section. We also anticipate 40% more beam time being available at Texas A&M Cyclotron Institute compared to LBNL in FY2012. The increased amount of beam time will allow us to accumulate better statistics then what would have been available at LBNL.

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5 p. (0.1 MB)

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  • Report No.: LLNL-TR-526671
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-48
  • DOI: 10.2172/1035604 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1035604
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc845127

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  • February 1, 2012

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • April 13, 2017, 6:08 p.m.

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Ressler, J J; Burke, J T; Gostic, J; Bleuel, D; Escher, J E; Henderson, R A et al. Report on 240Am(n,x) surrogate cross section test measurement, report, February 1, 2012; Livermore, California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc845127/: accessed August 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.