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Development of a 127Xe calibration source for nEXO...

by Jason T Nattress, Lorenzo Fabris
Publication Type
Journal Name
Journal of Instrumentation
Publication Date
Page Numbers
01 to 21

We study a possible calibration technique for the nEXO experiment using a 127Xe electron capture source. nEXO is a next-generation search for neutrinoless double beta decay (0νββ) that will use a 5-tonne, monolithic liquid xenon time projection chamber (TPC). The xenon, used both as source and detection medium, will be enriched to 90% in 136Xe. To optimize the event reconstruction and energy resolution, calibrations are needed to map the position- and time-dependent detector response. The 36.3 day half-life of 127Xe and its small Q-value compared to that of 136Xe 0νββ would allow a small activity to be maintained continuously in the detector during normal operations without introducing additional backgrounds, thereby enabling in-situ calibration and monitoring of the detector response. In this work we describe a process for producing the source and preliminary experimental tests. We then use simulations to project the precision with which such a source could calibrate spatial corrections to the light and charge response of the nEXO TPC.