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Published January 1, 2015 | Submitted
Journal Article Open

A compact ultra-clean system for deploying radioactive sources inside the KamLAND detector


We describe a compact, ultra-clean device used to deploy radioactive sources along the vertical axis of the KamLAND liquid-scintillator neutrino detector for purposes of calibration. The device worked by paying out and reeling in precise lengths of a hanging, small-gauge wire rope (cable); an assortment of interchangeable radioactive sources could be attached to a weight at the end of the cable. All components exposed to the radiopure liquid scintillator were made of chemically compatible UHV-cleaned materials, primarily stainless steel, in order to avoid contaminating or degrading the scintillator. To prevent radon intrusion, the apparatus was enclosed in a hermetically sealed housing inside a glove box, and both volumes were regularly flushed with purified nitrogen gas. An infrared camera attached to the side of the housing permitted real-time visual monitoring of the cable׳s motion, and the system was controlled via a graphical user interface.

Additional Information

© 2014 Elsevier B.V. Received 2 July 2014; Received in revised form 25 September 2014; Accepted 25 September 2014; Available online 7 October 2014. We are grateful to the UC Berkeley Physics and LBNL machine shops for manufacturing and assembling many MiniCal components. Thanks are also due to K. Terao and C. Shimmin for their assistance in testing MiniCal; Al Smith of the LBNL Low Background Facility for radioassaying materials; J. Busenitz at the University of Alabama for help in ensuring that new and existing radioactive sources were mechanically compatible with MiniCal; and the former members of the full-volume calibration system team for sharing their experience and advice. The KamLAND experiment is supported by the Grant-in-Aid for Specially Promoted Research under Grants 16002002 and 21000001 from the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology; the World Premier International Research Center Initiative (WPI Initiative), MEXT, Japan; Stichting voor Fundamenteel Onderzoek der Materie (FOM) in the Netherlands; and the US Department of Energy (DOE) under Grants DE-AC02-05CH11231 and DE-FG03-00ER41138, as well as other DOE grants to individual institutions. The Kamioka Mining and Smelting Company provided service for activities in the mine.

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Submitted - 1407.0413v1.pdf


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