Journal article Open Access

LABEC, the INFN ion beam laboratory of nuclear techniques for environment and cultural heritage

Chiari, M.; Barone, S.; Bombini, A.; Calzolai, G.; Carraresi, L.; Castelli, L.; Czelusniak, C.; Fedi, M. E.; Gelli, N.; Giambi, F.; Giardi, F.; Giuntini, L.; Lagomarsino, S.; Liccioli, L.; Lucarelli, F.; Manetti, M.; Massi, M.; Mazzinghi, A.; Nava, S.; Ottanelli, P.; Sciortino, S.; Ruberto, C.; Sodi, L.; Taccetti, F.; Mandò, P. A.

The LABEC laboratory, the INFN ion beam laboratory of nuclear techniques for
environment and cultural heritage, located in the Scientific and Technological Campus of
the University of Florence in Sesto Fiorentino, started its operational activities in 2004, after
INFN decided in 2001 to provide our applied nuclear physics group with a large laboratory
dedicated to applications of accelerator-related analytical techniques, based on a new 3 MV
Tandetron accelerator. The new accelerator greatly improved the performance of existing
Ion Beam Analysis (IBA) applications (for which we were using since the 1980s an old
single-ended Van de Graaff accelerator) and in addition allowed to start a novel activity of
Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS), in particular for 14C dating. Switching between IBA
and AMS operation became very easy and fast, which allowed us high flexibility in programming
the activities, mainly focused on studies of cultural heritage and atmospheric aerosol
composition, but including also applications to biology, geology, material science and forensics,
ion implantation, tests of radiation damage to components, detector performance tests
and low-energy nuclear physics. This paper describes the facilities presently available in the
LABEC laboratory, their technical features and some success stories of recent applications.

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