Coventry, United Kingdom
This project is to develop the unique capabilities offered by the RIKEN-RAL muon facility in Oxfordshire, UK. Implanting negative muons results in X-ray emission which is element dependent and therefore the energy and intensity of such peaks can result in the determination of the elemental composition. These X-rays have large energies (~MeV) therefore probing beneath the surface is entirely possible, making this a novel and potentially powerful non-destructive probe. Alongside the instrument development we propose a broad science program, from cultural heritage to bio-materials to energy related materials.
Currently, elemental analysis commonly uses X-ray and electron beams which are good for measuring surfaces, how¬ever a significant advantage of muonic X-rays over those of electronic X-rays is their higher energy (0.01-6 MeV) due to the mass of the muon and there sensitivity to light atoms. These high energy muonic X-rays are emitted from the bulk of the samples without significant photon self-absorption.
The main part of this project will be to develop data analysis for negative muon experiments. This will include GEANT4 simula¬tions on muon implantation depth. Delivering a simplified data reduction and correction software, data visualisation within MANTID (includ¬ing importing the shape of the sample and transforming the acquired data from a series of measurements at different orientations relative to the incident beam into a 3D voxel mapping). This will also include incorporating GEANT4 simulations. Finally, but by no means least, we need to determine the limitations of the technique. In order to aid the development of the technique, three science themes will be investigated: cultural heritage, energy materials and engineering.
Ancient coins have been obtained from the University of Oxford as part of a program of research to study the circulation of gold around the Roman Empire. Here, the question is to determine in a completely non-destructive way the com-position of each coin, which can be difficult to achieve with other more surface-sensitive techniques because of surface enrichment/deterioration due to either natural corrosion processes or deliberate deception. This experiment will form part of a round-robin set of measurements using several of the more conventional techniques for elemental analysis.
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