Positronium beam production and scattering cross-sections
In this work, the efficiency for the production of a monoenergetic positronium beam via the charge-exchange reaction of a positron beam in a gaseous target has been determined for molecular hydrogen and molecular nitrogen. In the case of molecular nitrogen, it has been found that the energy range over which a useful intensity of collimated positronium may be produced can be extended to 250eV, 100eV higher than previously achieved. This should enable measurements of the total and partial positronium cross-sections at correspondingly higher energies, where target inelastic effects are expected to be significant A recent measurement of the integrated positronium formation cross-section for xenon found a larger yield of positronium atoms compared to the other noble gases. A shoulder was also seen 10eV above the peak and it was suggested that this might be due to the production of positronium in an excited state. These findings have provided an incentive to investigate the collimated positronium production efficiency from xenon, which has been found to be surprisingly low. The quantum state of the beam atoms has also been found to be dominantly ground state. Possible reasons for these findings are discussed Total cross-sections for positronium-gas scattering have been extracted from the measurements of the positronium beam production efficiency for both molecular nitrogen and xenon. These quantities have also been determined directly by measuring the intensity of the positronium beam transmitted through a gas cell via the Beer-Lambert Law. A good consistency is found between the values obtained using this method and those determined indirectly. Recently, measurements have been made of the absolute integrated cross-section for the fragmentation of positronium in collision with helium atoms, along with the longitudinal energy distributions of the residual positrons in the energy range -Ep/=13-33eV. Measurements of the latter indicate a peak close to half the residual positronium energy, suggesting that they continue to move in a correlated fashion with the emitted electrons. In the present work, these results have been confirmed using a different method, which enables the energy range of investigation to be extended both to higher and lower values. Preliminary results have also been obtained at Epx=60eV for the ejected positrons and for the ejected electrons at Ep/= 33eV.