When talking about neutron cross-sections, literature is usually investigating isolated cases of Neutron + Atom. Here, the abundance of hydrogen is dominating neutron fluxes through material.
I wonder whether the reflection or capture propability of neutron radiation changes when the flux is penetrating a system of (organic) molecules. I can imagine two effects potentially reducing the neutron cross-section for bounded hydrogen:
The dense grid of organic material (folded proteins etc, imagine thick tree or a croud of humans) could be able to shield their hydrogen atoms from beeing struck by neutrons. Assuming organic material to be much denser (nuclei/volume) then other material like soil, rocks.
Neutrons are not able to transfer their whole energy to the hydrogen nucleus when it is electrically bounded (p is bounded to its electron, which is bounded to the electrons of the molecular system, which introduces inertia to the protons ability to move). Concluding that the capability of slowing down neutrons is reduced compared to free hydrogen.
Is this complete non-sense or could there be a measurable influence to neutron fluxes when using (a) non-organic or (b) organic material, containing the same amount of hydrogen?