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Effect of an electric field on liquid helium scintillation produced by fast electrons...

Publication Type
Journal Name
Physical Review C
Publication Date

The dependence on applied electric field (0–40 kV/cm) of the scintillation light produced by fast electrons and α particles stopped in liquid helium in the temperature range of 0.44 K to 3.12 K is reported. For both types of particles, the reduction in the intensity of the scintillation signal due to the applied field exhibits an apparent temperature dependence. Using an approximate solution of the Debye-Smoluchowski equation, we show that the apparent temperature dependence for electrons can be explained by the time required for geminate pairs to recombine relative to the detector signal integration time. This finding indicates that the spatial distribution of secondary electrons with respect to their geminate partners possesses a heavy, non-Gaussian tail at larger separations and has a dependence on the energy of the primary ionization electron. We discuss the potential application of this result to pulse shape analysis for particle detection and discrimination.