Potential for Zinc Activation

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Joshua Guertler
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Real name: Joshua Guertler

Potential for Zinc Activation

Post by Joshua Guertler » Thu Nov 22, 2018 4:11 pm

Greetings,

I am currently in the process of building a fusor and am curious if it has the capability of activating Zinc-66.

As a bit of background on the fusor, it has a -40 kV DC, 400 W power supply, a 10^-2 mTorr hard vacuum, a deuterium pressure of 5-15 mTorr, a stainless steel chamber diameter of 6 inches, and an inner grid diameter of 1.5 inches. This device has yet to be run, thus, the neutron flux and isotropic neutron population are currently unknown. However, I hope that these details will give the reader a frame of reference for what the flux and population may look like.

The goal of this experiment would be to be able to activate Zinc-66 using the fusor's neutrons. This would optimally occur in a way that would produce a (n,2n) reaction that I may be able to observe with a Ludlum model 12-4 Neutron Counter (He-3 Neutron Counter).

Sincerely, Joshua Guertler

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Richard Hull
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Re: Potential for Zinc Activation

Post by Richard Hull » Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:04 pm

I'm sorry. You will not ever activate Zinc. The bulk of natural zinc is already radioactive and goes through a half life of 10e15 years via electron capture with no radiation detectable. All of the three other stable isotopes have capture cross sections of less than one barn. These will not activate with any fusor, no matter how long you run it.

Silver is always the best bet. As we have noted in many, many previous posts and FAQs.

A quick check in my reference on how Zn isotopes are made, (The Radio Chemical Manual, 1966), indicates that the two or three iostopes produced in nuclear reactors demand 4 weeks of exposure in the seething core of a fission reactor bathed in a constant flux 10e12n/cm sq/sec to produce a rather tiny 4 millicuries of the respective isotopes. As a superlative fusor produces on the order of maybe 10e2n/cm sq/sec, you would need a fusor producing a 10 billion times the flux of a fusor operating continuously over 4 weeks to still fall short of saturating a zinc sample of decent half life.

Where did you get the idea that you could activate zinc?? An indepth study of the table of the isotopes, backed by a full understanding of activation, capture cross sections and general nuclear physics would be advisable.

Richard
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

Joshua Guertler
Posts: 47
Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:59 pm
Real name: Joshua Guertler

Re: Potential for Zinc Activation

Post by Joshua Guertler » Thu Nov 22, 2018 10:41 pm

Greetings,

Could magnesium serve as a potential material that would produce an observable n,2n reaction with fusor neutrons?

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Richard Hull
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Re: Potential for Zinc Activation

Post by Richard Hull » Fri Nov 23, 2018 2:15 am

No. Look it up.

n,2n reactions are threshold reactions and in general require large fast neutron energies, far beyond the fast neutrons of the D-D reaction in a fusor.
Beryllium is a rare exception.with a threshold of 1.86mev. you would need a large amount of Be to make it happen and then measurement would be tough using a fusor. There is just no suitable flux from a fusor.

https://www.ipen.br/biblioteca/iea/IEA_PUB_38.pdf

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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