Measuring and validating neutron capture cross sections using a lead slowing-down spectrometer

Thompson, Nicholas
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Danon, Yaron
Liu, Li (Emily)
Ji, Wei
Slaybaugh, Rachel
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Nuclear engineering and science
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Data was collected as a function of time after neutron pulse, or slowing-down time, which is correlated to average neutron energy. An analog and a digital data acquisition system collected data simultaneously, allowing for collection of pulse shape information as well as timing. Collection of digital data allowed for pulse shape analysis after the experiment. This data was then analyzed and compared to Monte Carlo simulations to validate the accuracy of neutron capture cross section libraries. These measurements represent the first time that neutron capture cross sections have been measured using an LSDS in the United States, and the first time tools such as coincidence measurements and pulse height weighting have been applied to measurements of neutron capture cross sections using an LSDS. Significant differences between measurement results and simulation results were found in multiple materials, and some errors in nuclear data libraries have already been identified due to these measurements.
August 2017
School of Engineering
Dept. of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY
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