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Hand-Held Gamma-Ray Spectrometer Based on High-Efficiency Frisch-Ring CdZnTe Detectors.

Description: Frisch-ring CdZnTe detectors have demonstrated good energy resolution, el% FWHM at 662 keV, and good efficiency for detecting gamma rays. This technique facilitates the application of CdZnTe materials for high efficiency gamma-ray detection. A hand-held gamma-ray spectrometer based on Frisch-ring detectors is being designed at Brookhaven National Laboratory. It employs an 8x8 CdZnTe detector array to achieve a high volume of 19.2 cm3, so that detection efficiency is significantly improved. By using the front-end ASICs developed at BNL, this spectrometer has a small profile and high energy resolution. The spectrometer includes signal processing circuit, digitization and storage circuit, high-voltage module, and USB interface. In this paper, we introduce the details of the system structure and report our test results with it.
Date: May 1, 2007
Creator: Cui, Y.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: CdZnTe (CZT) is a very promising material for nuclear-radiation detectors. CZT detectors operate at ambient temperatures and offer high detection efficiency and excellent energy resolution, placing them ahead of high-purity Ge for those applications where cryogenic cooling is problematic. The progress achieved in CZT detectors over the past decade is founded on the developments of robust detector designs and readout electronics, both of which helped to overcome the effects of carrier trapping. Because the holes have low mobility, only electrons can be used to generate signals in thick CZT detectors, so one must account for the variation of the output signal versus the locations of the interaction points. To obtain high spectral resolution, the detector's design should provide a means to eliminate this dependence throughout the entire volume of the device. In reality, the sensitive volume of any ionization detector invariably has two regions. In the first, adjacent to the collecting electrode, the amplitude of the output signal rapidly increases almost to its maximum as the interaction point is located farther from the anode; in the rest of the volume, the output signal remains nearly constant. Thus, the quality of CZT detector designs can be characterized based on the magnitude of the signals variations in the drift region and the ratio between the volumes of the driR and induction regions. The former determines the ''geometrical'' width of the photopeak i.e., the line width that affects the total energy resolution and is attributed to the device's geometry when all other factors are neglected. The latter determines the photopeak efficiency and the area under the continuum in the pulse-height spectra. In this work, we describe our findings from systematizing different designs of CZT detectors and evaluating their performance based on these two criteria.
Date: August 26, 2007
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Characterization of bubble core and cloudiness in Yb3+:Sr5(PO4)3F crystals using Micro-Raman spectroscopy

Description: Ytterbium doped strontium fluoroapatite Yb{sup 3+}:Sr{sub 5}(PO{sub 4}){sub 3}F (Yb: S-FAP) crystals have been used in High Average Power Laser systems as gain medium. Growth induced defects associated with the crystal often affect their performance. In order to improve the crystal quality and its optical applications, it is imperative to understand the nature of these defects. In this study, we utilize Micro-Raman spectroscopy to characterize two common growth-induced defects: bubble core and cloudiness. We find the bubble core consist of voids and microcrystals of Yb: S-FAP. These microcrystals have very different orientation from that of the pure crystal outside the bubble core. In contrast to a previous report, neither Sr{sub 3}(PO{sub 4}){sub 2} nor Yb{sub 2}O{sub 3} are observed in the bubble core regions. On the other hand, the cloudy regions are made up of the host materials blended with a structural deformation along with impurities which include CaCO{sub 3}, YbPO{sub 4}, SrHPO{sub 4} and Sr{sub 2}P{sub 2}O{sub 7}. The impurities are randomly distributed in the cloudy regions. This analysis is necessary for understanding and eliminating these growth defects in Yb:S-FAP crystals.
Date: November 15, 2006
Creator: Cui, Y; Roy, U N; Bai, L; Burger, A; Qiu, S R & Schaffers, K
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Polarization Studies of CdZnTe Detectors Using Synchrotron X-Ray Radiation.

Description: New results on the effects of small-scale defects on the charge-carrier transport in single-crystal CdZnTe (CZT) material were produced. We conducted detailed studies of the role of Te inclusions in CZT by employing a highly collimated synchrotron x-ray radiation source available at Brookhaven's National Synchrotron Light Source (NSLS). We were able to induce polarization effects by irradiating specific areas with the detector. These measurements allowed the first quantitative comparison between areas that are free of Te inclusions and those with a relatively high concentration of inclusions. The results of these polaration studies will be reported.
Date: July 1, 2007
Creator: Camarda, G. S.; Bolotnikov, A. E.; Cui, Y.; Hossain, A. & James, R. B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

CZT Virtual Frisch-grid Detector: Principles and Applications

Description: Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CdZnTe or CZT) is a very attractive material for using as room-temperature semiconductor detectors, because it has a wide bandgap and a high atomic number. However, due to the material's poor hole mobility, several special techniques were developed to ensure its suitability for radiation detection. Among them, the virtual Frisch-grid CZT detector is an attractive option, having a simple configuration, yet delivering an outstanding spectral performance. The goal of our group in Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) is to improve the performance of Frisch-ring CZT detectors; most recently, that effort focused on the non-contacting Frisch-ring detector, allowing us to build an inexpensive, large-volume detector array with high energy-resolution and a large effective area. In this paper, the principles of virtual Frisch-grid detectors are described, especially BNL's innovative improvements. The potential applications of virtual Frisch-grid detectors are discussed, and as an example, a hand-held gamma-ray spectrometer using a CZT virtual Frischgrid detector array is introduced, which is a self-contained device with a radiation detector, readout circuit, communication circuit, and high-voltage supply. It has good energy resolution of 1.4% (FWHM of 662-keV peak) with a total detection volume of {approx}20 cm{sup 3}. Such a portable inexpensive device can be used widely in nonproliferation applications, non-destructive detection, radiation imaging, and for homeland security. Extended systems based on the same technology have potential applications in industrial- and nuclear-medical-imaging.
Date: March 24, 2009
Creator: Cui,Y.; Bolotnikov, A.; Camarda, G.; Hossain, A. & James, R. B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Residual impurities in manganese (Mn) are a big obstacle to obtaining high-performance CdMnTe (CMT) X-ray and gamma-ray detectors. Generally, the zone-refining method is an effective way to improve the material's purity. In this work, we purified the MnTe compounds combining the zone-refining method with molten Te, which has a very high solubility for most impurities. We confirmed the improved purity of the material by glow-discharge mass spectrometry (GDMS). We also found that CMT crystals from a multiply-refined MnTe source, grown by the vertical Bridgman method, yielded better performing detectors.
Date: April 25, 2011
Creator: Kim, K. H.; Bolotnikov, A. E.; Camarda, G. S.; Tappero, R.; Hossain, A.; Cui, Y. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CdZnTe or CZT) is a very attractive material for room-temperature semiconductor detectors because of its wide band-gap and high atomic number. Despite these advantages, CZT still presents some material limitations and poor hole mobility. In the past decade most of the developing CZT detectors focused on designing different electrode configurations, mainly to minimize the deleterious effect due to the poor hole mobility. A few different electrode geometries were designed and fabricated, such as pixelated anodes and Frisch-grid detectors developed at Brookhaven National Lab (BNL). However, crystal defects in CZT materials still limit the yield of detector-grade crystals, and, in general, dominate the detector's performance. In the past few years, our group's research extended to characterizing the CZT materials at the micro-scale, and to correlating crystal defects with the detector's performance. We built a set of unique tools for this purpose, including infrared (IR) transmission microscopy, X-ray micro-scale mapping using synchrotron light source, X-ray transmission- and reflection-topography, current deep level transient spectroscopy (I-DLTS), and photoluminescence measurements. Our most recent work on CZT detectors was directed towards detailing various crystal defects, studying the internal electrical field, and delineating the effects of thermal annealing on improving the material properties. In this paper, we report our most recent results.
Date: October 23, 2011
Creator: BOLOTNIKOV, A.; CAMARDA, G.; HOSSAIN, A.; KIM, K.H.; YANG, G.; GUL, R. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Opto-electrical characterization and X-ray mapping of large-volume cadmium zinc telluride radiation detectors

Description: Large-volume cadmium zinc telluride (CZT) radiation detectors would greatly improve radiation detection capabilities and, therefore, attract extensive scientific and commercial interests. CZT crystals with volumes as large as hundreds of centimeters can be achieved today due to improvements in the crystal growth technology. However, the poor performance of large-volume CZT detectors is still a challenging problem affecting the commercialization of CZT detectors and imaging arrays. We have employed Pockels effect measurements and synchrotron X-ray mapping techniques to investigate the performance-limiting factors for large-volume CZT detectors. Experimental results with the above characterization methods reveal the non-uniform distribution of internal electric field of large-volume CZT detectors, which help us to better understand the responsible mechanism for the insufficient carrier collection in large-volume CZT detectors.
Date: April 13, 2009
Creator: Yang, G.; Bolotnikov, A.E.; Camarda, G.S.; Cui, Y.; Hossain, A.; Yao, H.W. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: One important mission of the Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration is to develop reliable gamma-ray detectors to meet the widespread needs of users for effective techniques to detect and identify special nuclear- and radioactive-materials. Accordingly, the Nonproliferation and National Security Department at Brookhaven National Laboratory was tasked to evaluate existing technology and to develop improved room-temperature detectors based on semiconductors, such as CdZnTe (CZT). Our research covers two important areas: Improving the quality of CZT material, and exploring new CZT-based gamma-ray detectors. In this paper, we report on our recent findings from the material characterization and tests of actual CZT devices fabricated in our laboratory and from materials/detectors supplied by different commercial vendors. In particular, we emphasize the critical role of secondary phases in the current CZT material and issues in fabricating the CZT detectors, both of which affect their performance.
Date: May 4, 2007
Creator: Camarda, G. S.; Bolotnikov, A. E.; Cui, Y.; Hossain, A.; Kohman, K. T. & James, R. B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Internal Electric Field Behavior of Cadmium Zinc Telluride Radiation Detectors Under High Carrier Injection

Description: The behavior of the internal electric-field of nuclear-radiation detectors substantially affects the detector's performance. We investigated the distribution of the internal field in cadmium zinc telluride (CZT) detectors under high carrier injection. We noted the build-up of a space charge region near the cathode that produces a built-in field opposing the applied field. Its presence entails the collapse of the electric field in the rest of detector, other than the portion near the cathode. Such a space-charge region originates from serious hole-trapping in CZT. The device's operating temperature greatly affects the width of the space-charge region. With increasing temperature from 5 C to 35 C, its width expanded from about 1/6 to 1/2 of the total depth of the detector.
Date: October 26, 2010
Creator: Yang, G.; Bolotnikov, A.E.; Camarda, G.S.; Cui, Y.; Hossain, A.; Kim, K.H. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Investigations of Cadmium Manganese Telluride Crystals for Room-Temperature Radiation Detection

Description: Cadmium manganese telluride (CMT) has high potential as a material for room-temperature nuclear-radiation detectors. We investigated indium-doped CMT crystals taken from the stable growth region of the ingot, and compared its characteristics with that from the last-to-freeze region. We employed different techniques, including synchrotron white-beam X-ray topography (SWBXT), current-voltage (I-V) measurements, and low-temperature photoluminescence spectra, and we also assessed their responses as detectors to irradiation exposure. The crystal from the stable growth region proved superior to that from the last-to-freeze region; it is a single-grain crystal, free of twins, and displayed a resistivity higher by two orders-of-magnitude. The segregation of indium dopant in the ingot might be responsible for its better resistivity. Furthermore, we recorded a good response in the detector fabricated from the crystal taken from the stable growth region; its ({mu}{tau}){sub e} value was 2.6 x 10{sup -3} cm{sup 2}/V, which is acceptable for thin detectors, including for applications in medicine.
Date: October 6, 2009
Creator: Yang, G.; Bolotnikov, A.; Camarda, G.; Cui, Y.; Hossain, A.; Kim, K. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Te Inclusions in CZT Detectors: New Method for Correcting Their Adverse Effects

Description: Both Te inclusions and point defects can trap the charge carriers generated by ionizing particles in CdZnTe (CZT) detectors. The amount of charge trapped by point defects is proportional to the carriers’ drift time and can be corrected electronically. In the case of Te inclusions, the charge loss depends upon their random locations with respect to the electron cloud. Consequently, inclusions introduce fluctuations in the charge signals, which cannot be easily corrected. In this paper, we describe direct measurements of the cumulative effect of Te inclusions and its influence on the response of CZT detectors of different thicknesses and different sizes and concentrations of Te inclusions. We also discuss a means of partially correcting their adverse effects.
Date: October 25, 2009
Creator: Bolotnikov, A.E.; Babalola, S.; Camarda, G.S.; Cui, Y.; Egarievwe, S.U.; Hawrami, R. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Distribution of Te inclusions in a CdZnTe wafer and their effects on the electrical properties of fabricated devices

Description: We quantified the size and concentration of Te-inclusions along the lateral- and the growth-directions of a {approx}6 mm thick wafer cut axially along the center of a CdZnTe ingot. We fabricated devices, selecting samples from the center slice outward in both directions, and then tested their response to incident x-rays. We employed, in concert, an automated IR transmission microscopic system and a highly collimated synchrotron X-ray source that allowed us to acquire and correlate comprehensive information on Te inclusions and other defects to assess the material factors limiting the performance of CdZnTe detectors.
Date: May 24, 2010
Creator: Hossain , A.; Xu, L.; Bolotnikov, A.E.; Camarda, G.S.; Cui, Y.; Yang, G. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Fundamental Mechanisms Driving the Amorphous to Crystalline Phase Transformation

Description: Phase transformations are ubiquitous, fundamental phenomena that lie at the heart of many structural, optical and electronic properties in condensed matter physics and materials science. Many transformations, especially those occurring under extreme conditions such as rapid changes in the thermodynamic state, are controlled by poorly understood processes involving the nucleation and quenching of metastable phases. Typically these processes occur on time and length scales invisible to most experimental techniques ({micro}s and faster, nm and smaller), so our understanding of the dynamics tends to be very limited and indirect, often relying on simulations combined with experimental study of the ''time infinity'' end state. Experimental techniques that can directly probe phase transformations on their proper time and length scales are therefore key to providing fundamental insights into the whole area of transformation physics and materials science. LLNL possesses a unique dynamic transmission electron microscope (DTEM) capable of taking images and diffraction patterns of laser-driven material processes with resolution measured in nanometers and nanoseconds. The DTEM has previously used time-resolved diffraction patterns to quantitatively study phase transformations that are orders of magnitude too fast for conventional in situ TEM. More recently the microscope has demonstrated the ability to directly image a reaction front moving at {approx}13 nm/ns and the nucleation of a new phase behind that front. Certain compound semiconductor phase change materials, such as Ge{sub 2}Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 5} (GST), Sb{sub 2}Te and GeSb, exhibit a technologically important series of transformations on scales that fall neatly into the performance specifications of the DTEM. If a small portion of such material is heated above its melting point and then rapidly cooled, it quenches into an amorphous state. Heating again with a less intense pulse leads to recrystallization into a vacancy-stabilized metastable rock salt structure. Each transformation takes {approx}10-100 ns, and the cycle can be ...
Date: January 4, 2011
Creator: Reed, B W; Browning, N D; Santala, M K; LaGrange, T; Gilmer, G H; Masiel, D J et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Internal electric-field-lines distribution in CdZnTe detectors measured using X-ray mapping

Description: The ideal operation of CdZnTe devices entails having a uniformly distributed internal electric field. Such uniformity especially is critical for thick long-drift-length detectors, such as large-volume CPG and 3-D multi-pixel devices. Using a high-spatial resolution X-ray mapping technique, we investigated the distribution of the electric field in real devices. Our measurements demonstrate that in thin detectors, <5 mm, the electric field-lines tend to bend away from the side surfaces (i.e., a focusing effect). In thick detectors, >1 cm, with a large aspect ratio (thickness-to-width ratio), we observed two effects: the electric field lines bending away from or towards the side surfaces, which we called, respectively, the focusing field-line distribution and the defocusing field-line distribution. In addition to these large-scale variations, the field-line distributions were locally perturbed by the presence of extended defects and residual strains existing inside the crystals. We present our data clearly demonstrating the non-uniformity of the internal electric field.
Date: October 19, 2009
Creator: Bolotnikov, A. E.; Camarda, G. S.; Cui, Y.; Hossain, A.; Yang, G.; Yao, H. W. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: We studied the effects of small, <20 {micro}m, Te inclusions on the energy resolution of CdZnTe gamma-ray detectors using a highly collimated X-ray beam and gamma-rays, and modeled them via a simplified geometrical approach. Previous reports demonstrated that Te inclusions of about a few microns in diameter degraded the charge-transport properties and uniformity of CdZnTe detectors. The goal of this work was to understand the extent to which randomly distributed Te-rich inclusions affect the energy resolution of CZT detectors, and to define new steps to overcome their deleterious effects. We used a phenomenological model, which depends on several adjustable parameters, to reproduce the experimentally measured effects of inclusions on energy resolution. We also were able to hound the materials-related problem and predict the enhancement in performance expected by reducing the size and number of Te inclusions within the crystals.
Date: October 29, 2006
Creator: BOLOTNIKOV, A.E.; CAMARDA, G.S.; CUI, Y.; KOHMAN, K.T.; LI, L.; SALOMON, M.B. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Te-rich secondary phases existing in CdZnTe (CZT) single crystals degrade the spectroscopic performance of these detectors. An unpredictable number of charges are trapped, corresponding to the abundance of these microscopic defects, thereby leading to fluctuations in the total collected charge and strongly affecting the uniformity of charge-collection efficiency. These effects, observed in thin planar detectors, also were found to be the dominant cause of the low performance of thick detectors, wherein the fluctuations accumulate along the charge's drift path. Reducing the size of Te inclusions from a virtual diameter of 10-20 {micro}m down to less than 5 {micro}m already allowed us to produce Frisch-ring detectors with a resolution as good as {approx}0.8% FWHM at 662 keV: Understanding and modeling the mechanisms involving Te-rich secondary phases and charge loss requires systematic studies on a spatial scale never before realized. Here, we describe a dedicated beam-line recently established at BNL's National Synchrotron Light Source for characterizing semiconductor detectors along with a IR system with counting capability that permits us to correlate the concentration of defects with the devices' performances.
Date: August 13, 2006
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: We present new results from our studies of defects in current single-crystal CdZnTe material. Our previous measurements, carried out on thin ({approx}1 mm) and long (>12 mm) CZT detectors, indicated that small (1-20 {micro}m) Te inclusions can significantly degrade the device's energy resolution and detection efficiency. We are conducting detailed studies of the effects of Te inclusions by employing different characterization techniques with better spatial resolution, such as quantitative fluorescence mapping, X-ray micro-diffraction, and TEM. Also, IR microscopy and gamma-mapping with pulse-shape analysis with higher spatial resolution generated more accurate results in the areas surrounding the micro-defects (Te inclusions). Our results reveal how the performance of CdZnTe detectors is influenced by Te inclusions, such as their spatial distribution, concentration, and size. We also discuss a model of charge transport through areas populated with Te inclusions.
Date: August 13, 2006
Creator: CAMARDA, G.S.; BOLOTNIKOV, A.E.; CARINI, G.A.; CUI, Y.; KOHMAN, K.T.; LI, L. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Frisch-ring CdZnTe detectors have demonstrated good energy resolution for identifying isotopes, <1% FWHM at 662 keV, and good efficiency for detecting gamma rays. We will fabricate and test at Brookhaven National Laboratory an integrated module of a 64-element array of 6 x 6 x 12 mm{sup 3} Frisch-ring detectors, coupled with a readout electronics system. It supports 64 readout channels, and includes front-end electronics, signal processing circuit, USB interface and high-voltage power supply. The data-acquisition software is used to process the data stream, which includes amplitude and timing information for each detected event. This paper describes the design and assembly of the detector modules, readout electronics, and a conceptual prototype system. Some test results are also reported.
Date: October 29, 2006
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department