A study of the scattering of fast neutrons in large samples

  • Sattar P.T. Anvarian

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


In the present work, the elastic scattering of fast neutrons from iron and concrete samples were studied at incident neutron energies of 14.0 and 14.4 Mev, using a neutron spectrometer based on the associated particle time-of-flight technique. These samples were chosen because of their importance in the design of fusion reactor shielding and construction.
Using the S.A.M.E.S. accelerator and the 3 M v Dynamitron accelerator at the Radiation Centre, 14.0 and 14.4 Mev neutrons were produced by the T(d, n)4He reaction at incident deuteron energies of 140 keV and 900 keV mass III ions respectively. The time of origin of the neutron was determined by detecting the associated alpha particles. The samples used were extended flat plates of thicknesses up to 1.73 mean free paths for iron and 2.3 mean free paths for concrete. The associated alpha particles and fast neutrons were detected by means of a plastic scintillator mounted on a fast focused photomultiplier tube.
The differential neutron elastic scattering cross-sections were measured for 14 Mev neutrons in various thicknesses of iron and concrete in the angular range from zero to 90°. In addition, the angular distributions of 14.4 Mev neutrons after passing through extended samples of iron were measured at several scattering angles in the same angular range. The measurements obtained for the thin sample of iron were compared with the results of Coon et al. The differential cross-sections for the thin iron sample were also analyzed on the optical model using the computer code RAROMP. For the concrete sample, the angular distribution of the thin sample was compared with the cross-sections calculated from the major constituent elements of concrete, and with the predicted values of the optical model for those elements. No published data could be found to compare with the results of the concrete differential cross-sections. In the case of thick samples of iron and concrete, the number of scattered neutrons were compared with a phenomological calculation based on the continuous slowing down model. The variation of measured cross-sections with sample thickness were found to follow the empirical relation σ = σ0 eαx. By using the universal constant "K", good fits were obtained to the experimental data.
In parallel with the work at 14.0 and 14.4 Mev, an associated particle time-of-flight spectrometer was investigated which used the 2H(d,n)3He reaction for 3.02 Mev neutron energy at the incident deuteron energy of 1 Mev.
Date of AwardJun 1982
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorA.J. Cox (Supervisor)


  • neutron
  • elastic scattering
  • cross-sections
  • extended samples
  • iron and concrete

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