For thermal neutrons (in 1/v region), absorption cross-section increases as the velocity (kinetic energy) of the neutron decreases. Therefore the 1/v Law can be used to determine shift in absorbtion cross-section, if the neutron is in equilibrium with a surrounding medium. This phenomenon is due to the fact the nuclear force between the target nucleus and the neutron has a longer time to interact.
This law is aplicable only for absorbtion cross-section and only in the 1/v region.
Example of cross- sections in 1/v region:
The absorbtion cross-section for 238U at 20°C = 293K (~0.0253 eV) is:
The absorbtion cross-section for 238U at 1000°C = 1273K is equal to:
This cross-section reduction is caused only due to the shift of temperature of surrounding medium.
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