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Equipment Development

Technical  Developments and Equipment

In close collaboration with Holifield Radioactive Ion Beam Facility (HRIBF) scientists, researchers at University Radioactive Ion Beam (UNIRIB) consortium universities are offered the opportunity to perform low-energy nuclear structure research using radioactive/stable ion beams and experimental equipment available through HRIBF.

UNIRIB, a division of the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), provides not only funding, but also technical support, equipment and the ability to bring scientists together to collaborate on nuclear energy research. The UNIRIB consortium also plays an important role in leveraging national laboratory and university resources to effectively accomplish the strategic science goals of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

Learn more about many of UNIRIB’s ongoing technical developments and available equipment below:

Active Projects

Oak Ridge Isomer and Isobar Spectrometer and Separator (ORISS)

ORISS is an ultra-high-resolution isomer/isobar separator for the spectroscopy of the decay of very exotic nuclei. Radioactive ion beams are produced via the isotope separator on-line technique (ISOL) method, where a thick target is bombarded with light ions, such as protons, deuterons or alpha particles. The radioactive species produced in the reaction has to diffuse out of the production target and is transported to the ion source where it is ionized and accelerated.

These steps are highly dependent on the chemistry of the isotope. Neutron-rich beams are produced at the HRIBF via the fission of uranium. In this case, isotopes of many different elements are produced simultaneously. Hence, it is often necessary to perform chemical separation in addition to mass separation.

He-jet ion source

The He-jet ion source is a fast and chemically in-selective novel type of ion source, which can be used to investigate very exotic, short-lived isotopes.


The Ekta-BESCA is a nine-fold, segmented, solid state conversion electron spectrometer with very high peak detection efficiency.

Development of radioactive ion beam ion sources

The radioactive ion beam development team works to understand the processes that take place in a target-ion source and to optimize each of them in order to purify beams and increase their intensities. Development of new beams is also needed to support experiments with proton-rich isotopes that are relevant to radiochemical detectors for stewardship science.


UNISOR mass separator

The UNISOR isotope separator facility is composed of a target/ion source station on-line to the 25 MeV tandem accelerator, a 90-degree mass separation magnet having a mass resolution of m/dm = 2000, and three experimental endstations.

Recoil mass spectrometer (RMS)

The RMS is a zero degree device used to separate masses produced in nuclear reactions. The spectrometer is 25 meters long and is comprised of a momentum separator for beam rejection and the traditional electric-magnetic-electric dipole mass separator.

Low-energy radioactive ion beam spectroscopy station (LeRIBSS)

The LeRIBSS is a detector station for decay spectroscopy of exotic neutron-rich nuclei produced during the proton-induced fission of U238 at the HRIBF.  

Digital electronics for decay spectroscopy

Decay spectroscopy involves the observation of radioactive nuclei through beta decay, alpha decay and proton emission.