Pulse Shape Discrimination of low-energy nuclear and electron recoils for improved particle identification in NaI:Tl

N. J. Spinks*, L. J. Bignell, G. J. Lane, A. Akber, E. Barberio, T. Baroncelli, B. J. Coombes, J. T.H. Dowie, T. K. Eriksen, M. S.M. Gerathy, T. J. Gray, I. Mahmood, B. P. McCormick, W. J.D. Melbourne, A. J. Mitchell, F. Nuti, M. S. Rahman, F. Scutti, A. E. Stuchbery, H. TimmersP. Urquijo, Y. Y. Zhong, M. J. Zurowski

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    The scintillation mechanism in NaI:Tl crystals produces different pulse shapes that are dependent on the incoming particle type. The time distribution of scintillation light from nuclear recoil events decays faster than for electron recoil events and this difference can be categorised using various Pulse Shape Discrimination (PSD) techniques. In this study, we measured nuclear and electron recoils in a NaI:Tl crystal, with electron equivalent energies between 2 and 40 keV. We report on a new PSD approach, based on an event-type likelihood; this outperforms the charge-weighted mean-time, which is the conventional metric for PSD in NaI:Tl. Furthermore, we show that a linear combination of the two methods improves the discrimination power at energies greater than 10 keV.

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