Nuclear Science and Engineering / Volume 150 / Number 1 / May 2005 / Pages 99-108
A neutronic benchmark experiment on a simulated spallation neutron target assembly was conducted by using the Alternating Gradient Synchrotron at Brookhaven National Laboratory and was analyzed to investigate the prediction capability of Monte Carlo simulation codes used in neutronic designs of spallation neutron sources. The target assembly consisting of a mercury target, a light water moderator, and a lead reflector was bombarded by 1.94-, 12-, and 24-GeV protons, and the fast neutron flux distributions around the target and the spectra of thermal neutrons leaking from the moderator were measured in the experiment. In this study, the Monte Carlo particle transport simulation codes NMTC/JAM, MCNPX, and MCNP-4A with associated cross-section data in JENDL and LA-150 were verified based on benchmark analysis of the experiment. As a result, all the calculations predicted the measured quantities adequately; calculated integral fluxes of fast and thermal neutrons agreed approximately within ±40% with the experiments although the overall energy range encompassed more than 12 orders of magnitude. Accordingly, it was concluded that these simulation codes and cross-section data were adequate for neutronics designs of spallation neutron sources.