Our group is engaged in a wide range of experimental and evaluation activities to address nuclear data deficiencies. Most of this work takes place at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory 88-Inch Cyclotron or at the High Flux Neutron Generator within the UC Berkeley Department of Nuclear Engineering
The goal of the Bay Area Nuclear Data Group is to address the data needs of the basic and applied nuclear science community while training the next generation of nuclear scientists and engineers in the process.
The Bay Area Nuclear Data Group works closely with the Bay Area Neutron Group (BANG) led by Bethany Goldblum and the Nuclear Science and Security Consortium (NSSC) on a wide variety of nuclear data, security and education related efforts.
Since its discovery in 1938, the understanding of nuclear fission has played a central role in the development of nuclear technology, which has had an enormous impact on the world today. The Bay Area Nuclear Data group seeks to improve our understanding of the fission process through improved measurements and modeling. Our group is measuring independent fission yields for short-lived products at the Fast Loading & Unloading Facility for Fission Yields (FLUFFY) which could have a significant impact understanding the reactor anti-neutrino anomaly. We have also developed a model-independent method of determining fission yield covariances and have developed the FIER code to predict gamma-ray spectra from fission. more
Every year, approximately 17 million nuclear medicine procedures (both diagnostic and therapeutic) are performed in the U.S. alone. Most of the radionuclides currently used for these procedures are produced by low- and intermediate-energy accelerators, e.g., 11C, 18F, 68Ga, 82Rb, and 123I. These accelerators also produce non-medical radionuclides with commercial value, such as 22Na, 73As, 95mTc, and 109Cd. However, the production of radioisotopes for research, industry, and commercial purposes is in short supply. Consequently, through the research necessary to address such deficiencies, it is possible to expand this list of options to include novel and emerging isotopes, as well as develop alternative pathways for production of established isotopes. Isotope production sits at the intersection of a number of different multidisciplinary fields: chemistry, biochemical engineering, experimental nuclear physics, and nuclear medicine. Bringing together these different disciplines allows for the development of next-generation, personalized approaches to medical imaging and cancer therapy. Most of the work being done by our group is performed under the auspices of the DOE Isotope Program, managed by the Office of Science. more
The interaction of neutrons with matter is central to both basic and applied nuclear science from the functioning of nuclear reactors and weapons to the formation of heavy elements in astrophysical settings. However, the fact that they interact with the world solely through the nuclear forces and gravitation makes the modeling of neutron transport both challenging to model (e.g., evaluate) and fascinating to study. more
Many members of the BAND group support nuclear data evaluation. Evaluation is the most painstaking part of the nuclear data pipeline process described in our recent review article. Evaluation takes different forms depending on the type of nuclear data.
Information about low-lying nuclear structure (e.g., level energies, Jπ values, lifetimes etc.) resides in the Evaluated Nuclear Structure Data File (ENSDF). The governing philosophy behind ENSDF evaluation is to take all information that is known about discrete states in a given nucleus from nuclear reactions and decay and combine them to create a recommended set of Adopted Levels and Gammas for general use. more
Users may raise awareness of issues in nuclear structure data through the new Nuclear Structure Experimental Issues (NSEI) website.
The BAND group has also developed NucScholar, a tool to support nuclear data evaluation through Natural Language Processing (NLP).
High quality nuclear data provides tremendous benefit to society by improving national security, helping in the design of advanced, safe nuclear power and through the production of radionuclides for the treatment and diagnosis of illness. However, the role of nuclear data in these pursuits is often “hidden” inside of topic-specific modeling. As a US Nuclear Data Program center located at a world-class University and nuclear engineering department, the lab that gave birth to the nuclear age and next to a premier national security lab (LLNL) the BAND Group is well-poised to bring together the users and providers of nuclear data to develop a national plan to address cross-cutting nuclear data needs. more
The neutron-capture reaction is fundamental for identifying and analyzing the γ-ray spectrum from an unknown assembly because it provides unambiguous information on the neutron-absorbing isotopes. Nondestructive-assay applications may exploit this phenomenon passively, for example, in the presence of spontaneous-fission neutrons, or actively where an external neutron source is used as a probe. more
The Facility for University-based Reactor and Nuclear Astrophysics Capture Experiments (FURNACE) will perform nuclear data experiments needed to improve modeling of fast reactors and astrophysicsl nucleosynthesis in the 1-1000 keV energy region. more
Nuclei far from stability reveal properties of nuclear structure phenomena at an extreme imbalance of the number of neutrons and protons with respect to stable nuclei, allowing a better understanding of fundamental nuclear interactions. In most cases, the study of heavy charged particle decay modes is the only method available to populate the nuclear states necessary to obtain this information. more
Lee Bernstein is the Nuclear Data Group Leader at LBNL and an Associate Professor at the UC-Berkeley Department of Nuclear Engineering. He leads the Bay Area Nuclear Data Group, whose mission is to meet the nuclear data needs of the applied and basic science and engineering community while training the next generation of nuclear scientists and engineers in the process. more
Catherine is a PhD student and a member of the nuclear data group at UC Berkeley. She has performed data analysis as a member of the 2019 Master of Engineering cohort at UC Berkeley and prior to that for five years in the insurance industry. more
M. Shamsuzzoha Basunia is a Physicist Research Scientist at LBNL and working within the Nuclear Data Program (NDP), Nuclear Science Division, LBNL, also known as Isotopes Project, since 2003. He is involved mainly with nuclear structure data evaluation and partially with experiments using the 88-inch cyclotron at LBNL. more
Jon Batchelder is an Assistant Research Engineer in the Nuclear Engineering Department at UC Berkeley and a nuclear structure evaluator with more than two decades of experience measuring the properties of nuclei far from stability using radioactive beams and decay spectroscopy. more
LLNL Staff Scientist
Dr. Darren Bleuel is a staff scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. His research includes direct neutron scattering and fission cross section measurements, nuclear level density and gamma strength function measurements, nuclear-plasma interactions, and neutron/gamma-ray spectroscopy. more
Chris Brand is a PhD student at UC-Berkeley Department of Nuclear Engineering and is employed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). His Academic Advisor is Prof. Lee Bernstein and his Laboratory Mentor is Dr. Darren Bleuel. He performs research in support of the fast, mono-energetic neutron imaging project at LLNL which includes various simulation/experimental efforts for neutron diagnostics. more
Josh Brown is a research engineer at University of California Berkeley. He has broad interests in nuclear detection research and development including fast neutron and gamma ray detection. He enjoys working at many levels from high fidelity component characterization, to system level design and benchmarking. more
Char Juin Chin is an undergraduate student at UC Berkeley studying Computer Science and Linguistics. His current research focuses on natural language processing and its applications in nuclear data with NucScholar. more
Dr. Anastasia Georgiadou is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Nuclear Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. She conducts neutron inelastic scattering cross-section measurements with the GENESIS array. more
Dr. Bethany Goldblum is a Scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Research Engineer at the University of California, Berkeley. more
Joey Gordon started his PhD in Nuclear Engineering at UC Berkeley in Fall 2019, and his research is on neutron inelastic scattering cross sections with the Gamma-Energy Neutron-Energy Spectrometer for Inelastic Scattering (GENESIS). more
Isabel Hernandez is a Ph.D. student in Nuclear Engineering at UC Berkeley, working in the Nuclear Data Group. more
Dr. Aaron Hurst undertook a Ph. D. in nuclear physics under the supervision of Prof. Peter Butler at the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom. His thesis topic focused on low-energy Coulomb-excitation measurements using the Radioactive ion-beam Experiment Isotope Separator Online (REX-ISOLDE) facility at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland. more
Thibault Laplace is an Assistant Research Engineer in the Nuclear Engineering Department at UC Berkeley. His research interests include neutron detection, detector characterization, and measurements of low-energy nuclear properties and cross sections. more
Abby (Yun-Hsuan) Lee is an undergraduate student at UC Berkeley from Taiwan, majoring in nuclear engineering with a passion for physics. Her research focuses on nuclear reaction modeling and data analysis using TALYS. more
Keenan Myers is a first year PhD student at UC Berkeley and a member of the nuclear data group. more
Tyler Nagel is a PhD student in Nuclear Engineering under Dr. Lee Bernstein. He received his M.S. from UC Berkeley in 2020 for work on lepton recoil corrections in beta-delayed neutron spectroscopy using trapped ions. His current research involves cross section measurements for neutron induced reactions on Cl-35. more
Sarah Stevenson is a PhD student in Peter Hosemann’s Nuclear Materials Group at UC Berkeley, developing a novel ion beam degrader to support materials science research at the 88-Inch Cyclotron. more
Dr. Dajie Sun is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Nuclear Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. He conducts High-Power Target Systems design for neutron production via thick target deuteron breakup. more
Dr. Andrew Voyles is an Assistant Research Engineer in the Nuclear Engineering Department at UC Berkeley, and leads the Isotope Production Group at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's 88-Inch Cyclotron. This work focuses on the production of novel isotopes for medical applications, developing new production methods for existing isotopes, and refining the predictive models at the intersection of isotope production and low-energy nuclear physics. more
Dr. Walid Younes is a consultant with the Nuclear Data Group and guest instructor at the UC Berkeley Department of Nuclear Engineering, with over 25 years of experience in experimental and theoretical nuclear physics. His research interests currently are focused on the development of a microscopic theory of fission. more
For a list of former group members, please click here.