Undergraduate education at the University of Kentucky accelerator laboratory

A. P.D. Ramirez, B. Alemayehu, J. Lowrie, S. F. Hicks, J. R. Vanhoy, M. T. McEllistrem, S. Mukhopadhyay, E. E. Peters, S. W. Yates

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

The University of Kentucky accelerator laboratory provides undergraduate students an opportunity to experience scientific research in nuclear physics. They are introduced to our research program, which focuses on the examination of basic nuclear properties using the 7 MV CN Van de Graaff accelerator and the time-of-flight facility to perform inelastic neutron scattering measurements with γ-ray and neutron detection. Students are given a series of projects to support the measurements including experimental equipment setup, kinematic calculations, data collection, experimental diagnostics, MCNP simulations, analysis code development, and preliminary analysis of the data. Undergraduate physics majors from the University of Dallas took part in (n,n′γ) measurements for LiF. Neutron scattering cross sections for these nuclei, which are of significant interest in coolant designs for molten salt reactors, were determined for incident neutron energies between 0.8 and 4.5 MeV. By measuring the γ-ray production cross sections and feeding contributions from higher-lying levels, students extracted the neutron level cross sections for Li and F. Additional (n,n′) measurements for Li metal will be performed in the near future to supplement the γ-ray data.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication25th International Conference on the Application of Accelerators in Research and Industry, CAARI 2018
ISBN (Electronic)9780735419056
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2 2019
Event25th International Conference on the Application of Accelerators in Research and Industry, CAARI 2018 - Grapevine, United States
Duration: Aug 12 2018Aug 17 2018

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
Volume2160
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616

Conference

Conference25th International Conference on the Application of Accelerators in Research and Industry, CAARI 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityGrapevine
Period8/12/188/17/18

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded in part by the U.S. DOE NNSA-SSAA under Grant No. DE-NA0002931, U.S. NSF under Grant No. PHY-1606890, and the Donald A. Cowan Physics Institute at the University of Dallas. The authors also acknowledge Harvey Baber for his continued support for our program and for maintaining the accelerator.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Author(s).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (all)

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