Ab initio calculations of the isotopic dependence of nuclear clustering [CL]


Nuclear clustering describes the appearance of structures resembling smaller nuclei such as alpha particles (4He nuclei) within the interior of a larger nucleus. While clustering is important for several well-known examples, little is known about the general nature of clustering in nuclei. In this letter we present lattice Monte Carlo calculations based on chiral effective field theory for the ground states of helium, beryllium, carbon, and oxygen isotopes. By computing model-independent measures that probe three- and four-nucleon correlations at short distances, we determine the effective number of alpha clusters in any nucleus as well as their shape compared to alpha particles in vacuum. We also introduce a new computational approach called the pinhole algorithm, which solves a long-standing deficiency of auxiliary-field Monte Carlo simulations in computing density correlations relative to the center of mass. We use the pinhole algorithm to determine the proton and neutron density distributions and the geometry of cluster correlations in 12C, 14C, and 16C. The structural similarities among the carbon isotopes suggest that 14C and 16C have excitations analogous to the well-known Hoyle state resonance in 12C.

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S. Elhatisari, E. Epelbaum, H. Krebs, et. al.
Mon, 20 Feb 17

Comments: 5 + 9 pages (main + supplemental materials), 4 + 6 figures (main + supplemental materials)

Measurement of the stellar $^{58}$Ni$(n,γ)^{59}$Ni cross section with AMS [SSA]


The $^{58}$Ni$(n,\gamma)^{59}$Ni cross section was measured with a combination of the activation technique and accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). The neutron activations were performed at the Karlsruhe 3.7 MV Van de Graaff accelerator using the quasi-stellar neutron spectrum at $kT=25$ keV produced by the $^7$Li($p,n$)$^7$Be reaction. The subsequent AMS measurements were carried out at the 14 MV tandem accelerator of the Maier-Leibnitz-Laboratory in Garching using the Gas-filled Analyzing Magnet System (GAMS). Three individual samples were measured, yielding a Maxwellian-averaged cross section at $kT=30$ keV of $\langle\sigma\rangle_{30\text{keV}}$= 30.4 (23)$^{syst}$(9)$^{stat}$ mbarn. This value is slightly lower than two recently published measurements using the time-of-flight (TOF) method, but agrees within the uncertainties. Our new results also resolve the large discrepancy between older TOF measurements and our previous value.

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P. Ludwig, G. Rugel, I. Dillmann, et. al.
Tue, 14 Feb 17

Comments: 13 pages, 4 figures; accepted for publication in Phys. Rev. C (2017)

First On-Site True Gamma-Ray Imaging-Spectroscopy of Contamination near Fukushima Plant [CL]


We have developed an Electron Tracking Compton Camera (ETCC), which provides a well-defined Point Spread Function (PSF) by reconstructing a direction of each gamma as a point and realizes simultaneous measurement of brightness and spectrum of MeV gamma-rays for the first time. Here, we present the results of our on-site pilot gamma-imaging-spectroscopy with ETCC at three contaminated locations in the vicinity of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants in Japan in 2014. The obtained distribution of brightness (or emissivity) with remote-sensing observations is unambiguously converted into the dose distribution. We confirm that the dose distribution is consistent with the one taken by conventional mapping measurements with a dosimeter physically placed at each grid point. Furthermore, its imaging spectroscopy, boosted by Compton-edge-free spectra, reveals complex radioactive features in a quantitative manner around each individual target point in the background-dominated environment. Notably, we successfully identify a “micro hot spot” of residual caesium contamination even in an already decontaminated area. These results show that the ETCC performs exactly as the geometrical optics predicts, demonstrates its versatility in the field radiation measurement, and reveals potentials for application in many fields, including the nuclear industry, medical field, and astronomy.

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D. Tomono, T. Mizumoto, A. Takada, et. al.
Fri, 10 Feb 17

Comments: 19 pages, 7 figures, 2 tables

Establishment of Imaging Spectroscopy of Nuclear Gamma-Rays based on Geometrical Optics [CL]


Since the discovery of nuclear gamma-rays, its imaging has been limited to pseudo imaging, such as Compton Camera (CC) and coded mask. Pseudo imaging does not keep physical information (intensity, or brightness in Optics) along a ray, and thus is capable of no more than qualitative imaging of bright objects. To attain quantitative imaging, cameras that realize geometrical optics is essential, which would be, for nuclear MeV gammas, only possible via complete reconstruction of the Compton process. Recently we have revealed that “Electron Tracking Compton Camera” (ETCC) provides a well-defined Point Spread Function (PSF). The information of an incoming gamma is kept along a ray with the PSF and that is equivalent to geometrical optics. Here we present an imaging-spectroscopic measurement with the ETCC. Our results highlight the intrinsic difficulty with CCs in performing accurate imaging, and show that the ETCC surmounts this problem. The imaging capability also helps the ETCC suppress the noise level dramatically by ~3 orders of magnitude without a shielding structure. Furthermore, full reconstruction of Compton process with the ETCC provides spectra free of Compton edges. These results mark the first proper imaging of nuclear gammas based on the genuine geometrical optics.

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T. Tanimori, Y. Mizumura, A. Takada, et. al.
Fri, 10 Feb 17

Comments: 22 pages, 8 figures

Radiogenic Neutron Yield Calculations for Low-Background Experiments [CL]


Nuclear recoil backgrounds are one of the most dangerous backgrounds for many dark matter experiments. A primary source of nuclear recoils is radiogenic neutrons produced in the detector material itself. These neutrons result from fission and $(\alpha,n)$ reactions originating from uranium and thorium contamination. In this paper, we discuss neutron yields from these sources. We compile a list of $(\alpha,n)$ yields for many materials common in low-background detectors, calculated using NeuCBOT, a new tool introduced in this paper, available at https://github.com/shawest/neucbot. These calculations are compared to computations made using data compilations and SOURCES-4A

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S. Westerdale and P. Meyers
Thu, 9 Feb 17

Comments: N/A

Concurrent application of ANC and THM to assess the $^{13}{\rm C}(α,n)^{16}{\rm O}$ absolute cross section at astrophysical energies and possible consequences for neutron production in low-mass AGB stars [SSA]


The $^{13}{\rm C}(\alpha,n)^{16}{\rm O}$ reaction is considered to be the main neutron source responsible for the production of heavy nuclides (from ${\rm Sr}$ to ${\rm Bi}$) through slow $n$-capture nucleosynthesis ($s$-process) at low temperatures during the asymptotic giant branch (AGB) phase of low mass stars ($\lesssim 3-4\;{\rm M}_{\odot}$, or LMSs). In recent years, several direct and indirect measurements have been carried out to determine the cross section at the energies of astrophysical interest (around $190\pm40\;{\rm keV}$). However, they yield inconsistent results causing a highly uncertain reaction rate and affecting the neutron release in LMSs. In this work we have combined two indirect approaches, the asymptotic normalization coefficient (or ANC) and the Trojan Horse Method (THM), to unambiguously determine the absolute value of the $^{13}{\rm C}(\alpha,n)^{16}{\rm O}$ astrophysical factor. Therefore, we have determined a very accurate reaction rate to be introduced into astrophysical models of $s$-process nucleosynthesis in LMSs. Calculations using such recommended rate have shown limited variations in the production of those neutron-rich nuclei (with $86\leq A\leq 209$) receiving contribution only by slow neutron captures.

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O. Trippella and M. Cognata
Tue, 7 Feb 17

Comments: N/A

Antonella: A nuclear-recoil ionization-efficiency measurement in silicon at low energies [CL]


We have measured the ionization efficiency of silicon nuclear recoils with kinetic energy between 1.8 and 20 keV. We bombarded a silicon-drift diode with a neutron beam to perform an elastic-scattering experiment. A broad-energy neutron spectrum was used and the nuclear recoil energy was reconstructed with the time-of-flight technique. The overall trend of the results of this work are well described by the theory of Lindhard et al. above 4 keV of recoil energy. Below this energy, the presented data shows a deviation from the model. The data indicates a faster drop than the extrapolation of the Lindhard theory to low energies.

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F. Izraelevitch, D. Amidei, A. Aprahamian, et. al.
Mon, 6 Feb 17

Comments: N/A