Detection system for neutron β decay correlations in the UCNB and Nab experiments

L. J. Broussard, B. A. Zeck, E. R. Adamek, S. Baeßler, N. Birge, M. Blatnik, J. D. Bowman, A. E. Brandt, M. Brown, J. Burkhart, N. B. Callahan, S. M. Clayton, C. Crawford, C. Cude-Woods, S. Currie, E. B. Dees, X. Ding, N. Fomin, E. Frlez, J. FryF. E. Gray, S. Hasan, K. P. Hickerson, J. Hoagland, A. T. Holley, T. M. Ito, A. Klein, H. Li, C. Y. Liu, M. F. Makela, P. L. McGaughey, J. Mirabal-Martinez, C. L. Morris, J. D. Ortiz, R. W. Pattie, S. I. Penttilä, B. Plaster, D. Počanić, J. C. Ramsey, A. Salas-Bacci, D. J. Salvat, A. Saunders, S. J. Seestrom, S. K.L. Sjue, A. P. Sprow, Z. Tang, R. B. Vogelaar, B. Vorndick, Z. Wang, W. Wei, J. Wexler, W. S. Wilburn, T. L. Womack, A. R. Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We describe a detection system designed for precise measurements of angular correlations in neutron β decay. The system is based on thick, large area, highly segmented silicon detectors developed in collaboration with Micron Semiconductor, Ltd. The prototype system meets specifications for β electron detection with energy thresholds below 10 keV, energy resolution of ∼3 keV FWHM, and rise time of ∼50 ns with 19 of the 127 detector pixels instrumented. Using ultracold neutrons at the Los Alamos Neutron Science Center, we have demonstrated the coincident detection of β particles and recoil protons from neutron β decay. The fully instrumented detection system will be implemented in the UCNB and Nab experiments to determine the neutron β decay parameters B, a, and b.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-93
Number of pages11
JournalNuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
StatePublished - Mar 21 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Neutron beta decay
  • Silicon detector
  • Ultracold neutrons

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Instrumentation


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