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Title: Measurement and Analysis of Gamma-Rays Emitted From Spent Nuclear Fuel Above 3 MeV

The gamma-ray spectrum of spent nuclear fuel in the 3- to 6-MeV energy range is important for active interrogation since emitted gamma rays emitted from nuclear decay are not expected to interfere with measurements in this energy region. There is, unfortunately, a dearth of empirical measurements from spent nuclear fuel in this region. This work is an initial attempt to partially ll this gap by presenting an analysis of gamma-ray spectra collected from a set of spent nuclear fuel sources using a high-purity germanium detector array. This multi-crystal array possesses a large collection volume, providing high energy resolution up to 16 MeV. The results of these measurements establish the continuum count-rate in the energy region between 3- and 6-MeV. Also assessed is the potential for peaks from passive emissions to interfere with peak measurements resulting from active interrogation delayed emissions. As one of the first documented empirical measurements of passive emissions from spent fuel for energies above 3 MeV, this work provides a foundation for active interrogation model validation and detector development.
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Resource Type:
Journal Article
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Journal Name: Applied Radiation and Isotopes, 82:181-187
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States
Spent nuclear fuel; gamma-ray spectroscopy; delayed gamma rays; neutron interrogation