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Far-ultraviolet signatures of the 3He(n,tp) reaction in noble gas mixtures



Patrick Hughes, Alan K. Thompson, Michael Coplan, Robert E. Vest, Charles W. Clark


Previous work showed that the 3He(n,tp) reaction in a cell of 3He at atmospheric pressure generated tens of far-ultraviolet photons per reacted neutron. Here we report amplification of that signal by factors of 1000 and more when noble gases are added to the cell. Calibrated filter-detector measurements show that this large signal is due to noble-gas excimer emissions, and that the exothermicity of the nuclear reaction is converted to far-ultraviolet radiation with efficiencies of up to 30%. The results have been placed on an absolute scale through calibrations at the NIST SURF III synchrotron. They suggest possibilities for high-efficiency neutron detectors as an alternative to existing proportional counters.
Applied Physics Letters


excimer, far ultraviolet, neutron, noble gas, synchrotron


Hughes, P. , Thompson, A. , Coplan, M. , Vest, R. and Clark, C. (2010), Far-ultraviolet signatures of the 3He(n,tp) reaction in noble gas mixtures, Applied Physics Letters (Accessed May 19, 2024)


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Created December 8, 2010, Updated February 19, 2017