Simulation of background reduction and Compton suppression in a low-background HPGe spectrometer at a surface laboratory

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NIU Shun-Li, CAI Xiao, WU Zhen-Zhong, LIU Yi, XIE Yu-Guang, YU Bo-Xiang, WANG Zhi-Gang, FANG Jian, SUN Xi-Lei, SUN Li-Jun, LIU Ying-Biao, GAO Long, ZHANG Xuan, ZHAO Hang, ZHOU Li, HU Tao and Simulation of background reduction and Compton suppression in a low-background HPGe spectrometer at a surface laboratory[J]. Chinese Physics C, 2015, 39(8): 086002. doi: 10.1088/1674-1137/39/8/086002
NIU Shun-Li, CAI Xiao, WU Zhen-Zhong, LIU Yi, XIE Yu-Guang, YU Bo-Xiang, WANG Zhi-Gang, FANG Jian, SUN Xi-Lei, SUN Li-Jun, LIU Ying-Biao, GAO Long, ZHANG Xuan, ZHAO Hang, ZHOU Li, HU Tao and Simulation of background reduction and Compton suppression in a low-background HPGe spectrometer at a surface laboratory[J]. Chinese Physics C, 2015, 39(8): 086002.  doi: 10.1088/1674-1137/39/8/086002 shu
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Received: 2014-10-20
Revised: 2015-03-17
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Simulation of background reduction and Compton suppression in a low-background HPGe spectrometer at a surface laboratory

    Corresponding author: NIU Shun-Li,
    Corresponding author: CAI Xiao,

Abstract: High-purity germanium (HPGe) detectors are well suited to analyse the radioactivity of samples. In order to reduce the environmental background for an ultra-low background HPGe spectrometer, low-activity lead and oxygen free copper are installed outside the probe to shield from gamma radiation, with an outer plastic scintillator to veto cosmic rays, and an anti-Compton detector to improve the peak-to-Compton ratio. Using Geant4 tools and taking into account a detailed description of the detector, we optimize the sizes of these detectors to reach the design requirements. A set of experimental data from an existing HPGe spectrometer was used to compare with the simulation. For the future low-background HPGe detector simulation, considering different thicknesses of BGO crystals and anti-coincidence efficiency, the simulation results show that the optimal BGO thickness is 5.5 cm, and the peak-to-Compton ratio of 40K is raised to 1000 when the anti-coincidence efficiency is 0.85. In the background simulation, 15 cm oxygen-free copper plus 10 cm lead can reduce the environmental gamma rays to 0.0024 cps/100 cm3 Ge (50 keV--2.8 MeV), which is about 10-5 of the environmental background.

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