The LICORNE neutron source and measurements of prompt γ-rays
Journal article, 2014
The emission of prompt gamma rays is one of the least measured and least well-understood parts of the fission process. Knowledge of prompt fission gamma spectra, mean energies and multiplicities are important for reactor gamma heating and hence linked to reactor safety. At the IPN Orsay we have developed a unique, directional, fast neutron source called LICORNE, intended initially to facilitate prompt fission gamma measurements. The ability of the IPN Orsay tandem accelerator to produce intense beams of 7L, is exploited to produce quasi mono-energetic neutrons between 0.5-4 MeV using the p(7Li,7Be)n inverse reaction. The available fluxes of up to 7×107 neutrons/second/steradian are comparable to existing installations, but with two added advantages: (i) The kinematic focusing produces a natural neutron beam collimation which allows placement of gamma detectors adjacent to the irradiated sample unimpeded by source neutrons. (ii) The background of scattered neutrons in the experimental hall is drastically reduced. The dedicated neutron converter was commissioned in June 2013.
Prompt fission gamma-rays