Proton polarization above 70% by DNP using photo-excited triplet states, a first step towards a broadband neutron spin filter
The use of polarized protons as neutron spin filter is an attractive alternative to the well established neutron polarization techniques, as the large, spin-clepenclent neutron scattering cross-section for protons is useful up to the sub-MeV region. Employing optically excited triplet states for the dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) of the protons relieves the stringent requirements of classical DNP schemes, i.e low temperatures and strong magnetic fields, making technically simpler systems with open geometries possible. Using triplet DNP a record polarization of 71% has been achieved in a pentacene doped naphthalene single crystal at a held of 0.36 T using a simple helium flow cryostat for cooling. Furthermore, by placing the polarized crystal in a neutron optics focus and de-focus scheme, the actual sample cross-section could be increased by a factor 35 corresponding to an effective spin filter cross-section of 18 x 18 mm(2).