New measurement of neutron capture resonances in Bi-209

C. Domingo-Pardo, U. Abbondanno, G. Aerts, H. Alvarez-Pol, F. Alvarez-Velarde, S. Andriamonje, J. Andrzejewski, P. Assimakopoulos, L. Audouin, G. Badurek, P. Baumann, F. Becvar, E. Berthoumieux, F. Calvino, D. Cano-Ott, R. Capote, A. Carrillo de Albornoz, P. Cennini, V. Chepel, E. ChiaveriN. Colonna, G. Cortes, A. Couture, J. Cox, M. Dahlfors, S. David, I. Dillman, R. Dolfini, W. Dridi, I. Duran, C. Eleftheriadis, M. Embid-Segura, L. Ferrant, A. Ferrari, R. Ferreira-Marques, L. Fitzpatrick, H. Frais-Koelbl, K. Fujii, W. Furman, R. Gallino, I. Goncalves, E. Gonzalez-Romero, A. Goverdovski, F. Gramegna, E. Griesmayer, C. Guerrero, F. Gunsing, B. Haas, R. Haight, M. Heil, A. Herrera-Martinez, M. Igashira, S. Isaev, E. Jericha, Y. Kadi, F. Kappeler, D. Karamanis, D. Karadimos, M. Kerveno, V. Ketlerov, P. Koehler, V. Konovalov, E. Kossionides, M. Krticka, C. Lamboudis, H. Leeb, A. Lindote, I. Lopes, M. Lozano, S. Lukic, J. Marganiec, L. Marques, S. Marrone, P. Mastinu, A. Mengoni, P. M. Milazzo, C. Moreau, M. Mosconi, F. Neves, H. Oberhummer, M. Oshima, S. O'Brien, J. Pancin, C. Papachristodoulou, C. Papadopoulos, C. Paradela, N. Patronis, A. Pavlik, P. Pavlopoulos, L. Perrot, R. Plag, A. Plompen, A. Plukis, A. Poch, C. Pretel, J. Quesada, T. Rauscher, R. Reifarth, M. Rosetti, C. Rubbia, G. Rudolf, P. Rullhusen, J. Salgado, L. Sarchiapone, I. Savvidis, C. Stephan, G. Tagliente, J. L. Tain, L. Tassan-Got, L. Tavora, R. Terlizzi, G. Vannini, P. Vaz, A. Ventura, D. Villamarin, M. C. Vincente, V. Vlachoudis, R. Vlastou, F. Voss, S. Walter, H. Wendler, M. Wiescher, K. Wisshak

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The neutron capture cross section of Bi-209 has been measured at the CERN n_TOF facility by employing the pulse-height-weighting technique. Improvements over previous measurements are mainly because of an optimized detection system, which led to a practically negligible neutron sensitivity. Additional experimental sources of systematic error, such as the electronic threshold in the detectors, summing of gamma-rays, internal electron conversion, and the isomeric state in bismuth, have been taken into account. gamma-Ray absorption effects inside the sample have been corrected by employing a nonpolynomial weighting function. Because Bi-209 is the last stable isotope in the reaction path of the stellar s-process, the Maxwellian averaged capture cross section is important for the recycling of the reaction flow by alpha decays. In the relevant stellar range of thermal energies between kT=5 and 8 keV our new capture rate is about 16% higher than the presently accepted value used for nucleosynthesis calculations. At this low temperature an important part of the heavy Pb-Bi isotopes are supposed to be synthesized by the s-process in the He shells of low mass, thermally pulsing asymptotic giant branch stars. With the improved set of cross sections we obtain an s-process fraction of 19 +/- 3% of the solar bismuth abundance, resulting in an r-process residual of 81 +/- 3%. The present (n,gamma) cross-section measurement is also of relevance for the design of accelerator driven systems based on a liquid metal Pb/Bi spallation target.

Original languageEnglish
Article number025807
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Review C (nuclear physics)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2006




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