Simulation of delayed gamma rays from neutron-induced fissions using MCNP 6.1
Nuclear Measurement Laboratory
Roberto De Stefano, Bertrand Pérot, Cédric Carasco, Eric Simon are with CEA, DEN, Cadarache, DTN, SMTA, Nuclear Measurement Laboratory, F-13108 Saint-Paul-Lez-Durance, France.
Published online: 20 January 2020
As part of its R&xD activities in the fields of radioactivewaste drum storage and homeland security, the NuclearMeasurement Laboratory of CEA Cadarache has started studiesrelated to the detection of induced delayed fission gamma rays asa signature of U/Pu presence either in radioactive wastes or incargo containers and luggage. The study described in the presentpaper explores the feasibility of detecting fission delayed gammarays of nuclear materials interrogated by a pulsed neutrongenerator. For this purpose, Monte Carlo simulations have beenperformed with ACT, the MNCP6 Activation Control Card.Simulated results have been compared with experimental data tovalidate the numerical model. Samples of uranium andplutonium have been irradiated for 2 hours with a pulsed D-Tneutron generator delivering 14 MeV neutrons with an averageemission of 8.107 n/s, which are thermalised in a graphite cellcalled REGAIN. At the end of irradiation, activated nuclearmaterials were placed in a low-background, high-resolutiongamma spectroscopy station in order to detect delayed gammarays emitted by fission products. Anomalies have been observedin the calculated time decay curve of fission delayed gamma rayswith MCNP6 ACT card, but the time behavior is correct for non-fission activated materials like aluminum or copper. On the otherhand, the number of counts recorded in the main simulatedgamma ray lines from activated nuclear material fission productsis consistent with the experimental results, thus validating thesimulation scheme in view of further studies on thecharacterization of radioactive waste drums or special nuclearmaterial detection in cargo containers.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2020
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