Thermal neutron capture cross sections of the potassium isotopes

R. B. Firestone, M. Krtička, Zs Révay, L. Szentmiklósi, T. Belgya

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Abstract

Precise thermal neutron capture γ-ray cross sections σγ for 39,40,41K were measured on a natural potassium target with the guided neutron beam at the Budapest Reactor. The cross sections were internally standardized using a stoichiometric KCl target with well-known 35Cl(n,γ) γ-ray cross sections. These data were combined with γ-ray intensities from von Egidy and Krusche to generate nearly complete capture γ-ray level schemes. Total radiative neutron cross sections were deduced from the total γ-ray cross section feeding the ground state, σ0= Σσγ(GS) after correction for unobserved statistical γ-ray feeding from levels near the neutron capture energy. The corrections were performed with Monte Carlo simulations of the potassium thermal neutron capture decay schemes using the computer code dicebox where the simulated populations of low-lying levels are normalized to the measured cross section depopulating those levels. Comparisons of the simulated and experimental level feeding intensities have led to proposed new spins and parities for selected levels in the potassium isotopes where direct reactions are not a significant contribution. We determined the total radiative neutron cross sections σ0 (39K)=2.28±0.04 b, σ0 (40K)=90±7 b, and σ0 (41K)=1.62±0.03 b from the prompt γ-ray data and the γ-ray transition probability Pγ(1524.66)=0.164(4) in the β- decay of 42K in a low-background counting experiment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number024605
JournalPhysical Review C - Nuclear Physics
Volume87
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 13 2013

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potassium isotopes
thermal neutrons
absorption cross sections
rays
cross sections
neutron cross sections
potassium
neutron beams
decay
transition probabilities
counting
parity
reactors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics

Cite this

Thermal neutron capture cross sections of the potassium isotopes. / Firestone, R. B.; Krtička, M.; Révay, Zs; Szentmiklósi, L.; Belgya, T.

In: Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics, Vol. 87, No. 2, 024605, 13.02.2013.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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