ISOLTRAP: An on-line Penning trap for mass spectrometry on short-lived nuclides
ABSTRACT ISOLTRAP is a Penning trap mass spectrometer for high-precision mass measurements on short-lived nuclides installed at the on-line isotope separator ISOLDE at CERN. The masses of close to 300 radionuclides have been determined up to now. The applicability of Penning trap mass spectrometry to mass measurements of exotic nuclei has been extended considerably at ISOLTRAP by improving and developing this double Penning trap mass spectrometer over the past two decades. The accurate determination of nuclear binding energies far from stability includes nuclei that are produced at rates less than 100 ions/s and with half-lives well below 100ms. The mass-resolving power reaches 107 corresponding to 10keV for medium heavy nuclei and the uncertainty of the resulting mass values has been pushed down to below 10-8. The article describes technical developments achieved since 1996 and the present performance of ISOLTRAP.