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Electronics of Time-of-Flight Measurement for Back-n at CSNS.

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    • Abstract:
      The back-streaming neutrons (back-n) is a white neutron experimental facility at the China spallation neutron source (CSNS). The time structure of the primary proton beam makes it fully applicable to use the time-of-flight (TOF) method for neutron energy measuring. We implemented the electronics of TOF measurement on the general-purpose readout electronics designed for all the seven detectors in back-n. The electronics are based on the peripheral component interconnect express eXtensions for instrumentation (PXIe) platform, which is composed of field digitizer modules (FDM), trigger and clock modules (TCM), and signal conditioning modules. The T0 signal synchronous to the CSNS accelerator represents the neutron emission from the target. It is the start of the time stamp. The TCM receives, synchronizes, and distributes the T0 signal to each FDM based on the PXIe backplane bus. Meanwhile, the detector signals, after being conditioned, are fed into FDMs for waveform digitizing. The first sample point of the signal waveform is the stop of the time stamp. According to the time stamp and the time of the signal over the threshold, the total TOF can be obtained. The time-to-digital converter (TDC) based on field-programmable gate array (FPGA) is implemented on the TCM to accurately acquire the time interval between the asynchronous T0 signal and the global synchronous clock phase. There is also an FPGA-based TDC on the FDM to accurately acquire the time interval between the T0 signal arriving at the FDM and the first sample point of the signal waveform. The over-threshold time of signal is obtained offline. This method for TOF measurement is efficient and not needed for additional modules. Test results showed that the accuracy of TOF is subnanosecond and can meet the requirement for back-n at the CSNS. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
    • Abstract:
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