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Measurement of the absolute neutron beam polarization from a supermirror polarizer and the absolute efficiency of a neutron s...

Publication Type
Journal Name
Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
Publication Date
Page Numbers
19 to 28

Accurately measuring the neutron beam polarization of a high flux, large area neutron beam is necessary for many neutron physics experiments. The Fundamental Neutron Physics Beamline (FnPB) at the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) is a pulsed neutron beam that was polarized with a supermirror polarizer for the NPDGamma experiment. The polarized neutron beam had a flux of ~10^9 neutrons per second per cm2 and a cross sectional area of 10 x 12 cm2. The polarization of this neutron beam and the efficiency of a RF neutron spin rotator installed downstream on this beam were measured by neutron transmission through a polarized 3He neutron spin-filter. The pulsed nature of the SNS enabled us to employ an absolute measurement technique for both quantities which does not depend on accurate knowledge of the phase space of the neutron beam or the 3He polarization in the spin filter and is therefore of interest for any experiments on slow neutron beams from pulsed neutron sources which require knowledge of the absolute value of the neutron polarization. The polarization and spin-reversal efficiency measured in this work were done for the NPDGamma experiment, which measures the parity violating γ-ray angular distribution asymmetry with respect to the neutron spin direction in the capture of polarized neutrons on protons. The experimental technique, results, systematic effects, and applications to neutron capture targets are discussed.