Decoupling of a neutron interferometer from temperature gradients
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Neutron interferometry enables precision measurements that are typically operated within elaborate, multi-layered facilities which provide substantial shielding from environmental noise. These facilities are necessary to maintain the coherence requirements in a perfect crystal neutron interferometer which is extremely sensitive to local environmental conditions such as temperature gradients across the interferometer, external vibrations, and acoustic waves. The ease of operation and breadth of applications of perfect crystal neutron interferometry would greatly benefit from a mode of operation which relaxes these stringent isolation requirements. Here, the INDEX Collaboration and National Institute of Standards and Technology demonstrates the functionality of a neutron interferometer in vacuum and characterize the use of a compact vacuum chamber enclosure as a means to isolate the interferometer from spatial temperature gradients and time-dependent temperature fluctuations. The vacuum chamber is found to have no depreciable effect on the performance of the interferometer (contrast) while improving system stability, thereby showing that it is feasible to replace large temperature isolation and control systems with a compact vacuum enclosure for perfect crystal neutron interferometry.
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Parminder Saggu, Taisiya Mineeva, Muhammad Arif, David G. Cory, Robert Haun, Benjamin Heacock, Michael G. Huber, Ke Li, Joachim Nsofini, Dusan Sarenac, Chandra B. Shahi, Vladimir Skavysh, W. Michael Snow, Samuel A. Werner, Albert R. Young, Dimitry A. Pushin (2016). Decoupling of a neutron interferometer from temperature gradients. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/13805