Modeling of Plutonium Ionization Probabilities for Use in Nuclear Forensic Analysis by Resonance Ionization Mass Spectrometry
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA MONTEREY United States
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Recent advancements in nuclear forensics have enabled the use of lasers via resonance ionization mass spectrometry RIMS to determine the isotopic composition ratios of U-235 and U-238. These technological advancements aid the field of nuclear forensics by establishing a known database and modeling approach for quantifying uranium isotope ionization probabilities. In order to further enhance the data and modeling capability necessary for nuclear forensics, numerical simulations must be analyzed and compared to experimental results conducted at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory LLNL. This research extends previous RIMS data simulation analysis conducted at Naval Postgraduate School NPS and LLNL. The modeling framework collaborates with the experimental data to empirically derive the ionization cross sections for plutonium, furthering the confidence in the use of RIMS for nuclear forensic analysis. By implementing the experimental data into the modeling framework, we are able to provide the Department of Defense a more rapid nuclear forensics process.