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Cross section measurements of 155,157Gd(n,γ) induced by thermal and epithermal neutrons

Abstract: 
Neutron capture cross section measurements on 155Gd and 157Gd were performed using the time-of-flight technique at the n_TOF facility at CERN on isotopically enriched samples. The measurements were carried out in the n_TOF experimental area EAR1, at 185 m from the neutron source, with an array of 4 C6D6 liquid scintillation detectors. At a neutron kinetic energy of 0.0253 eV, capture cross sections of 62.2(2.2) and 239.8(8.4) kilobarn have been derived for 155Gd and 157Gd, respectively, with up to 6% deviation relative to values presently reported in nuclear data libraries, but consistent with those values within 1.6 standard deviations. A resonance shape analysis has been performed in the resolved resonance region up to 181 eV and 307 eV, respectively for 155Gd and 157Gd, where on average, resonance parameters have been found in good agreement with evaluations. Above these energies and up to 1 keV, the observed resonance-like structure of the cross section has been analysed and characterised. From a statistical analysis of the observed neutron resonances we deduced: neutron strength function of 2.01(28)×10−4 and 2.17(41)×10−4 ; average total radiative width of 106.8(14) meV and 101.1(20) meV and s-wave resonance spacing 1.6(2) eV and 4.8(5) eV for n + 155Gd and n + 157Gd systems, respectively.