Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Physics Division

Physics Division Seminars

Physics Division Seminars bring us speakers on a variety of physics related subjects. Usually these are held in the Building 6008 large Conference Room, at 3:00 pm on the chosen day, but times and locations may vary. For more information, contact our seminar chairman,

Alfredo Galindo-Uribarri
Tel (Office): (865) 574-6124  (FAX): (865) 574-1268

Wed., July 19, 2017, at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM (refreshments served at 2:40 PM)

From the Origin of the Elements to Neutrinoless Double-beta Decay: How advances in detectors and techniques are shaping a new era of nuclear physics and applications

Michael Febbraio, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Bldg. 6008 Large Conference Room

Advances in detectors and techniques are needed to meet the current trends in nuclear physics research. This presentation will focus on three current efforts at ORNL covering direct nuclear astrophysics, low-energy reactions of importance to neutrino oscillation measurements, and neutrinoless double-beta decay. These efforts benefit from improvements in detectors for selecting weak signals. Advances in position sensitive liquid scintillator detectors have allow for direct measurements of astrophysically important 13C(α,n)16O reaction above-ground. The 13C(α,n)16O reaction is interesting for astrophysics as a main source of neutrons for the slow neutron capture process, which is important for synthesis of heavy elements. The development of a special class of deuterated scintillators permits measurements of neutron energy spectra without the use of time-of-flight. This has led to a major breakthrough in the detection and identification of special nuclear material and nuclear reaction measurements requiring detection of an outgoing neutron. Liquid argon and the synthesis of polyester based scintillators as active vetoes are in development for future ton-scale neutrinoless double-beta decay searches. While covering a broad range of nuclear physics, the common tread between these topics is the enabling scintillator detector technologies, all developed at ORNL, which make these measurements possible and their applications to the nuclear field.

Contact: Alfredo Galindo-Uribarri (865) 574-6124