A new high energy resolution neutron transmission detector at the Gaerttner LINAC Center and isotopic molybdenum total cross section measurements in the keV-region

Bahran, Rian M.
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Danon, Yaron
Malaviya, B. K.
Ji, Wei
Napolitano, Jim
Barry, Devin
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Nuclear engineering and science
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The Gaerttner LINAC Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is home to a 60 MeV electron linear accelerator (LINAC) that is used as a pulsed neutron source for TOF nuclear data experiments. High energy resolution total cross section measurements for the stable molybdenum isotopes of Mo-95, Mo-96, Mo-98, and Mo-100 were performed with a newly developed modular neutron transmission detector positioned at a 100 m experimental flight station. This work is part of an effort to both improve existing neutron total cross section libraries and measurement capabilities at the Gaerttner LINAC Center in and above the resolved resonance energy region (from 5-620 keV). The overall design optimization process and qualification of the new high resolution detector is presented. Additionally, a new method to quantify the energy-dependent neutron and gamma-ray experimental background of the detector was developed. High resolution isotopic molybdenum total cross section data are of particular importance because stable Mo isotopes can be found in significant concentrations in a nuclear fuel cycle either as a high yield fission product or in alloyed form with applications in reactor piping, fuel cladding, and as an advanced nuclear fuel in the form of U-Mo. The measured total cross section energy range encompasses the resolved resonance region and extends into the unresolved resonance region for each molybdenum isotope. New high accuracy resonance parameters for Mo-95 were generated from fitting experimental data using the multilevel R-matrix Bayesian code SAMMY in the resolved resonance region. In the unresolved resonance region, average resonance parameters and fits to the total cross section were obtained using the Hauser-Feshbach statistical model code FITACS which is embedded in SAMMY.
August 2013
School of Engineering
Dept. of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY
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