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Title: Barium Chemosensors with Dry-Phase Fluorescence for Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay

Abstract

The nature of the neutrino is one of the major open questions in experimental nuclear and particle physics. The most sensitive known method to establish the Majorana nature of the neutrino is detection of the ultra-rare process of neutrinoless double beta decay. However, identification of one or a handful of decay events within a large mass of candidate isotope, without obfuscation by backgrounds is a formidable experimental challenge. One hypothetical method for achieving ultra- low-background neutrinoless double beta decay sensitivity is the detection of single 136Ba ions produced in the decay of 136Xe (“barium tagging”). To implement such a method, a single-ion-sensitive barium detector must be developed and demonstrated in bulk liquid or dry gaseous xenon. This paper reports on the development of two families of dry-phase barium chemosensor molecules for use in high pressure xenon gas detectors, synthesized specifically for this purpose. One particularly promising candidate, an anthracene substituted aza-18-crown-6 ether, is shown to respond in the dry phase with almost no intrinsic background from the unchelated state, and to be amenable to barium sensing through fluorescence microscopy. This interdisciplinary advance, paired with earlier work demonstrating sensitivity to single barium ions in solution, opens a new path toward singlemore » ion detection in high pressure xenon gas.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [4];  [3];  [3];  [3];  [3]
  1. University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas (United States). Department of Physics; University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas (United States). Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
  2. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
  3. University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas (United States). Department of Physics
  4. University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas (United States). Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Univ. of Texas, Arlington, TX (United States); Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Univ. of Texas at Arlington, TX (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Nuclear Physics (NP)
OSTI Identifier:
1624488
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1863381; OSTI ID: 1908623
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-172091
Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322; PII: 49283
Grant/Contract Number:  
SC0019054; SC0019223; AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 9; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Publisher:
Nature Publishing Group
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
73 NUCLEAR PHYSICS AND RADIATION PHYSICS; science & technology

Citation Formats

Thapa, P., Arnquist, Isaac J., Byrnes, N., Denisenko, A. A., Foss, Frank Wells, Jones, B. J. P., McDonald, Austin D., Nygren, David Robert, and Woodruff, Katherine. Barium Chemosensors with Dry-Phase Fluorescence for Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1038/s41598-019-49283-x.
Thapa, P., Arnquist, Isaac J., Byrnes, N., Denisenko, A. A., Foss, Frank Wells, Jones, B. J. P., McDonald, Austin D., Nygren, David Robert, & Woodruff, Katherine. Barium Chemosensors with Dry-Phase Fluorescence for Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay. United States. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-49283-x
Thapa, P., Arnquist, Isaac J., Byrnes, N., Denisenko, A. A., Foss, Frank Wells, Jones, B. J. P., McDonald, Austin D., Nygren, David Robert, and Woodruff, Katherine. Tue . "Barium Chemosensors with Dry-Phase Fluorescence for Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay". United States. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-49283-x. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1624488.
@article{osti_1624488,
title = {Barium Chemosensors with Dry-Phase Fluorescence for Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay},
author = {Thapa, P. and Arnquist, Isaac J. and Byrnes, N. and Denisenko, A. A. and Foss, Frank Wells and Jones, B. J. P. and McDonald, Austin D. and Nygren, David Robert and Woodruff, Katherine},
abstractNote = {The nature of the neutrino is one of the major open questions in experimental nuclear and particle physics. The most sensitive known method to establish the Majorana nature of the neutrino is detection of the ultra-rare process of neutrinoless double beta decay. However, identification of one or a handful of decay events within a large mass of candidate isotope, without obfuscation by backgrounds is a formidable experimental challenge. One hypothetical method for achieving ultra- low-background neutrinoless double beta decay sensitivity is the detection of single 136Ba ions produced in the decay of 136Xe (“barium tagging”). To implement such a method, a single-ion-sensitive barium detector must be developed and demonstrated in bulk liquid or dry gaseous xenon. This paper reports on the development of two families of dry-phase barium chemosensor molecules for use in high pressure xenon gas detectors, synthesized specifically for this purpose. One particularly promising candidate, an anthracene substituted aza-18-crown-6 ether, is shown to respond in the dry phase with almost no intrinsic background from the unchelated state, and to be amenable to barium sensing through fluorescence microscopy. This interdisciplinary advance, paired with earlier work demonstrating sensitivity to single barium ions in solution, opens a new path toward single ion detection in high pressure xenon gas.},
doi = {10.1038/s41598-019-49283-x},
journal = {Scientific Reports},
number = 1,
volume = 9,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {10}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Figures / Tables:

Figure 1 Figure 1: Cartoon showing binding and turn-on fluorescence in dyes (a) FLUO-3, used in and (b) 18c6-an, developed for this work.

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