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Title: Nuclear Excitation by Electronic Transition of U-235

Nuclear excitation by electronic transition (NEET) is a rare nuclear excitation that is theorized to occur in numerous isotopes. One isotope in particular, 235U, has been studied several times over the past 40 years and NEET of 235U has never been conclusively observed. These past experiments generated con icting results with some experiments claiming to observe NEET of 235U and others setting limits for the NEET rate. This dissertation discusses the latest attempt to measure NEET of 235U. If NEET of 235U were to occur, 235mU would be created. 235mU decays by internal conversion with a decay energy of 76 eV and a half-life of 26 minutes. A pulsed Nd:YAG laser operating at 1064 nm with a pulse energy of 789 mJ and a pulse width of 9 ns was used to generate a uranium plasma. The plasma was captured on a catcher plate and electrons emitted from the catcher plate were accelerated and focused onto a microchannel plate detector. A decay of 26 minutes would suggest the creation of 235mU and the possibility that NEET occurred. However, measurements performed using a variety of uranium targets spanning depleted uranium up to 99.4% enriched uranium did not observe a 26 minutemore » decay. Numerous other decays were observed with half-lives ranging from minutes up to hundreds of minutes. While NEET of 235U was not observed during this experiment, an upper limit for the NEET rate of 235U was determined. In addition, explanations for the con icting results from previous experiments are given. Based on the results of this experiment and the previous experiments looking for NEET of 235U, it is likely that NEET of 235U has never been observed.« less
Authors:
 [1]
  1. Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1240939
Report Number(s):
LLNL-TH--676420
DOE Contract Number:
AC52-07NA27344
Resource Type:
Thesis/Dissertation
Research Org:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
22 GENERAL STUDIES OF NUCLEAR REACTORS; 73 NUCLEAR PHYSICS AND RADIATION PHYSICS; 70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION