Heavy Ions

Heavy ions used at the BASE Facility are accelerated in the form of “cocktails,” named because of the fact that several heavy ions with the same mass-to-charge ratio are sent into the Cyclotron, which accelerates the ions while acting as a precision mass separator. The Control Room Operator then uses Cyclotron frequency to select only the desired ion, a process that takes about 2 minutes. We provide four standard cocktails: 4.5, 10, 16, and 30 MeV/nucleon. Depending on the cocktail, LETs from 1 to 100 MeV/(mg/cm^2) and flux levels of up to 1E7 ions/cm2-sec are available. 

Parts are tested in our vacuum chamber, and can be remotely positioned horizontally, vertically, or rotationally (y and z axes) with the motion table. An alignment laser is available to ensure the part is in the center of the beam. Mounting hardware is readily available. 

The following feedthroughs are available for use: 

12xBNC (F-F)

2x25-pin D (F-M or M-F)

4x40-pin flat ribbon (M-M) (this feedthrough is wired straight across, so you will need a F-F adapter to correct the pin numbers to normal)

4x50-pin flat ribbon (M-M) (this feedthrough is wired straight across, so you will need a F-F adapter to correct the pin numbers to normal)

12xSMA (F-F)


A combination feedthrough with 5xBNC (F-F), 3xSMA (F-F), 2x9-pin D (M-M), 1x25-pin D (M-M), and 3xUSB (F-F)


Holes are provided through the cave shielding blocks for connecting additional test equipment, with a distance of approximately 10 feet from vacuum feedthrough to the top of the shielding block. All users need to provide their own test equipment, power supplies, computer monitors, ethernet cables, etc. 

To tune the beam in to the cave, the beam is first spread out (2-inch diameter minimum) evenly on the cave phosphor and viewed with a digital camera by the Control Room Operator. Once the visual spread is satisfactory, the beam is attenuated and five Hamamatsu R647 photomultiplier tubes (PMTs) are inserted. Four PMTs are placed around the edge of the beam, and one is placed in the middle. These PMTs are then calibrated by Cyclotron operations staff, after which the center PMT is removed to permit exposure of the target. All PMTs currently use YAP:Ce crystals that have proven to show minimal, if any, degradation in performance after extended periods of time in high-flux, high-LET beams. The PMT signal is routed through (CAMAC) scaler and discriminator modules before being sent up to the computer. 

The final processing and indication is performed with LabView software. The beam may be stopped manually, or by setting run time, fluence, or effective fluence limits. A run log is automatically created and maintained on the PC desktop that provides a detailed history of the run, and can be downloaded to a memory stick or similar device via USB ports on the front of the computer upon completion of testing.

Available Cocktails and Ions

BASE Operator's Manual

Drawings for Cave 4B Components