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Statistical uncertainties of nondestructive assay for spent nuclear fuel by using nuclear resonance fluorescence

Shizuma, Toshiyuki; Hayakawa, Takehito; Angell, C.; Hajima, Ryoichi; Minato, Futoshi; Suyama, Kenya; Seya, Michio; Johnson, M.*; McNabb, D.*

We estimated statistical uncertainties of a nondestructive assay system using nuclear resonance fluorescence (NRF) for spent nuclear fuel including low-concentrations of actinide nuclei with an intense, mono-energetic photon beam. Background counts from radioactive materials inside the spent fuel were calculated with the ORIGEN2.2-UPJ burn-up computer code. Coherent scattering contribution associated with Rayleigh, nuclear Thomson, and Delbr$"u$ck scattering was also considered. Assuming that the total NRF cross sections are in the range of 3 to 100 eV$$cdot$$b at excitation energies of 2.25, 3.5, and 5 MeV, statistical uncertainties of the NRF measurement were estimated. We concluded that it is possible to assay 1% actinide content in the spent fuel with 2.2 to 3.2% statistical precision during 4000 second measurement time for the total integrated cross section of 30 eV$$cdot$$b at excitation energies of 3.5 to 5 MeV.

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