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Chemical and Electronic Structure of Aromatic/Carborane Composite Films by PECVD for Neutron Detection

Description: Boron carbide-aromatic composites, formed by plasma-enhanced co-deposition of carboranes and aromatic precursors, present enhanced electron-hole separation as neutron detector. This is achieved by aromatic coordination to the carborane icosahedra and results in improved neutron detection efficiency. Photoemission (XPS) and FTIR suggest that chemical bonding between B atoms in icosahedra and aromatic contents with preservation of π system during plasma process. XPS, UPS, density functional theory (DFT) calculations, and variable angle spectroscopic ellipsometery (VASE) demonstrate that for orthocarborane/pyridine and orthocarborane/aniline films, states near the valence band maximum are aromatic in character, while states near the conduction band minimum include those of either carborane or aromatic character. Thus, excitation across the band gap results in electrons and holes on carboranes and aromatics, respectively. Further such aromatic-carborane interaction dramatically shrinks the indirect band gap from 3 eV (PECVD orthocarborane) to ~ 1.6 eV (PECVD orthocarborane/pyridine) to ~1.0 eV (PECVD orthocarborane/aniline), with little variation in such properties with aromatic/orthocarborane stoichiometry. The narrowed band gap indicate the potential for greatly enhanced charge generation relative to PECVD orthocarborane films, as confirmed by zero-bias neutron voltaic studies. The results indicate that the enhanced electron-hole separation and band gap narrowing observed for aromatic/orthocarborane films relative to PECVD orthocarborane, has significant potential for a range of applications, including neutron detection, photovoltaics, and photocatalysis. Acknowledgements: This work was supported by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (Grant No.HDTRA1-14-1-0041). James Hilfiker is also gratefully acknowledged for stimulating discussions.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Dong, Bin
Partner: UNT Libraries

Final Report on Actinide Glass Scintillators for Fast Neutron Detection

Description: This is the final report of an experimental investigation of actinide glass scintillators for fast-neutron detection. It covers work performed during FY2012. This supplements a previous report, PNNL-20854 “Initial Characterization of Thorium-loaded Glasses for Fast Neutron Detection” (October 2011). The work in FY2012 was done with funding remaining from FY2011. As noted in PNNL-20854, the glasses tested prior to July 2011 were erroneously identified as scintillators. The decision was then made to start from “scratch” with a literature survey and some test melts with a non-radioactive glass composition that could later be fabricated with select actinides, most likely thorium. The normal stand-in for thorium in radioactive waste glasses is cerium in the same oxidation state. Since cerium in the 3+ state is used as the light emitter in many scintillating glasses, the next most common substitute was used: hafnium. Three hafnium glasses were melted. Two melts were colored amber and a third was clear. It barely scintillated when exposed to alpha particles. The uses and applications for a scintillating fast neutron detector are important enough that the search for such a material should not be totally abandoned. This current effort focused on actinides that have very high neutron capture energy releases but low neutron capture cross sections. This results in very long counting times and poor signal to noise when working with sealed sources. These materials are best for high flux applications and access to neutron generators or reactors would enable better test scenarios. The total energy of the neutron capture reaction is not the only factor to focus on in isotope selection. Many neutron capture reactions result in energetic gamma rays that require large volumes or high densities to detect. If the scintillator is to separate neutrons from gamma rays, the capture reactions should produce heavy particles and few ...
Date: October 1, 2012
Creator: Bliss, Mary & Stave, Jean A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Comparisons in Neutron Detection, as modeled by MCNPX, in Li-6 Glass, HE-3, BF-3, and Borated PVT

Description: With the potential shortage of He-3 being reported by venders, it is important to consider other materials for neutron detection. Traditional neutron detectors are composed of BF-3 and He-3. Recently Li-6 Glass and borated PVT have been presented as possible replacements. This work will compare the relative detection efficiencies and consider other factors to determine the most appropriate neutron detection material.
Date: April 3, 2009
Creator: Lawrence Lakeotes, Craig Marianno
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Final Technical Report for the Neutron Detection without Helium-3 Project

Description: This report details the results of the research and development work accomplished for the ‘Neutron Detection without Helium-3’ project conducted during the 2011-2013 fiscal years. The primary focus of the project was to investigate commercially available technologies that might be used in safeguards applications in the relatively near term. Other technologies that are being developed may be more applicable in the future, but were outside the scope of this study.
Date: November 1, 2013
Creator: Ely, James H.; Bliss, Mary; Kouzes, Richard T.; Lintereur, Azaree T.; Robinson, Sean M.; Siciliano, Edward R. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Neutron Detector Gamma Insensitivity Criteria

Description: The shortage of 3He has triggered the search for an effective alternative neutron detection technology for radiation portal monitor applications. Any new detection technology must satisfy two basic criteria: 1) it must meet the neutron detection efficiency requirement, and 2) it must be insensitive to gamma ray interference at a prescribed level, while still meeting the neutron detection requirement. It is the purpose of this document to define this latter criterion.
Date: October 21, 2009
Creator: Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Lintereur, Azaree T. & Stephens, Daniel L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

BF3 Neutron Detector Tests

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world; thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and detection capabilities are being investigated. Reported here are the results of tests of the efficiency of BF3 tubes at a pressure of 800 torr. These measurements were made partially to validate models of the RPM system that have been modified to simulate the performance of BF3-filled tubes. While BF3 could be a potential replacement for 3He, there are limitations to its use in deployed systems.
Date: December 9, 2009
Creator: Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Lintereur, Azaree T.; Siciliano, Edward R. & Woodring, Mitchell L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron-10 ABUNCL Active Testing

Description: The Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Safeguards and Security (NA-241) is supporting the project Coincidence Counting With Boron-Based Alternative Neutron Detection Technology at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the development of a 3He proportional counter alternative neutron coincidence counter. The goal of this project is to design, build and demonstrate a system based upon 10B-lined proportional tubes in a configuration typical for 3He-based coincidence counter applications. This report provides results from testing of the active mode of the General Electric Reuter-Stokes Alternative Boron-Based Uranium Neutron Coincidence Collar (ABUNCL) at Los Alamos National Laboratory using sources and fuel pins.
Date: July 9, 2013
Creator: Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Lintereur, Azaree T. & Siciliano, Edward R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron-10 ABUNCL Models of Fuel Testing

Description: The Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Safeguards and Security (NA-241) is supporting the project Coincidence Counting With Boron-Based Alternative Neutron Detection Technology at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the development of a 3He proportional counter alternative neutron coincidence counter. The goal of this project is to design, build and demonstrate a system based upon 10B-lined proportional tubes in a configuration typical for 3He-based coincidence counter applications. This report provides results from MCNP simulations of the General Electric Reuter-Stokes Alternative Boron-Based Uranium Neutron Coincidence Collar (ABUNCL) active configuration model with fuel pins previously measured at Los Alamos National Laboratory. A comparison of the GE-ABUNCL simulations and simulations of 3He based UNCL-II active counter (the system for which the GE-ABUNCL was targeted to replace) with the same fuel pin assemblies is also provided.
Date: October 1, 2013
Creator: Siciliano, Edward R.; Lintereur, Azaree T.; Kouzes, Richard T. & Ely, James H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron-10 ABUNCL Prototype Models And Initial Active Testing

Description: The Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Safeguards and Security (NA-241) is supporting the project Coincidence Counting With Boron-Based Alternative Neutron Detection Technology at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the development of a 3He proportional counter alternative neutron coincidence counter. The goal of this project is to design, build and demonstrate a system based upon 10B-lined proportional tubes in a configuration typical for 3He-based coincidence counter applications. This report provides results from MCNPX model simulations and initial testing of the active mode variation of the Alternative Boron-Based Uranium Neutron Coincidence Collar (ABUNCL) design built by General Electric Reuter-Stokes. Initial experimental testing of the as-delivered passive ABUNCL was previously reported.
Date: April 23, 2013
Creator: Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Lintereur, Azaree T. & Siciliano, Edward R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Neutron Detection with Cryogenics and Semiconductors

Description: The common methods of neutron detection are reviewed with special attention paid to the application of cryogenics and semiconductors to the problem. The authors' work with LiF- and boron-based cryogenic instruments is described as well as the use of CdTe and HgI{sub 2} for direct detection of neutrons.
Date: March 10, 2005
Creator: Bell, Z. W.; Carpenter, D. A.; Cristy, S. S. & Lamberti, V. E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Conducting Polymers for Neutron Detection

Description: Conjugated polymers have emerged as an attractive technology for large-area electronic applications. As organic semiconductors, they can be used to make large-area arrays of diodes or transistors using fabrication techniques developed for polymer coatings, such as spraying and screen-printing. We have demonstrated both neutron and alpha detection using diodes made from conjugated polymers and have done preliminary work to integrate a boron carbide layer into the conventional polymer device structure to capture thermal neutrons. The polymer devices appear to be insensitive to gamma rays, due to their small physical thickness and low atomic number.
Date: December 1, 2007
Creator: Clare Kimblin, Kirk Miller, Bob Vogel, Bill Quam, Harry McHugh, Glen Anthony, Steve Jones, Mike Grover
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Coated Fiber Neutron Detector Test

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Reported here are the results of tests of the 6Li/ZnS(Ag)-coated non-scintillating plastic fibers option. This testing measured the required performance for neutron detection efficiency and gamma ray rejection capabilities of a system manufactured by Innovative American Technology (IAT).
Date: October 23, 2009
Creator: Lintereur, Azaree T.; Ely, James H.; Kouzes, Richard T. & Stromswold, David C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron-Lined Neutron Detector Measurements

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. Reported here are the results of tests of a newly designed boron-lined proportional counter option. This testing measured the neutron detection efficiency and gamma ray rejection capabilities of a system manufactured by Reuter Stokes.
Date: November 2, 2009
Creator: Lintereur, Azaree T.; Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Erikson, Luke E. & Siciliano, Edward R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron-Lined Neutron Detector Measurements

Description: PNNL-18938 Revision Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. Reported here are the results of tests of a newly designed boron-lined proportional counter option. This testing measured the neutron detection efficiency and gamma ray rejection capabilities of two successive prototypes of a system manufactured by GE Reuter Stokes.
Date: March 7, 2010
Creator: Lintereur, Azaree T.; Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Erikson, Luke E.; Siciliano, Edward R. & Woodring, Mitchell L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Lithium Loaded Glass Fiber Neutron Detector Tests

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world and, thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. Reported here are the results of tests of the lithium-loaded glass fibers option. This testing measured the neutron detection efficiency and gamma ray rejection capabilities of a small system manufactured by Nucsafe (Oak Ridge, TN).
Date: November 12, 2009
Creator: Ely, James H.; Erikson, Luke E.; Kouzes, Richard T.; Lintereur, Azaree T. & Stromswold, David C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Aerial Neutron Detection of Cosmic-Ray Interactions with the Earth's Surface

Description: We have demonstrated the ability to measure the neutron flux produced by the cosmic-ray interaction with nuclei in the ground surface using aerial neutron detection. High energy cosmic-rays (primarily muons with GeV energies) interact with the nuclei in the ground surface and produce energetic neutrons via spallation. At the air-surface interface, the neutrons produced by spallation will either scatter within the surface material, become thermalized and reabsorbed, or be emitted into the air. The mean free path of energetic neutrons in air can be hundreds of feet as opposed to a few feet in dense materials. As such, the flux of neutrons escaping into the air provides a measure of the surface nuclei composition. It has been demonstrated that this effect can be measured at long range using neutron detectors on low flying helicopters. Radiological survey measurements conducted at Government Wash in Las Vegas, Nevada, have shown that the neutron background from the cosmic-soil interactions is repeatable and directly correlated to the geological data. Government Wash has a very unique geology, spanning a wide variety of nuclide mixtures and formations. The results of the preliminary measurements are presented.
Date: September 18, 2008
Creator: Maurer, Richard
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Status Summary of 3He and Neutron Detection Alternatives for Homeland Security

Description: This is a short summary whitepaper on results of our alternatives work: Neutron detection is an important aspect of interdiction of radiological threats for homeland security purposes since plutonium, a material used for nuclear weapons, is a significant source of fission neutrons [Kouzes 2005]. Because of the imminent shortage of 3He, which is used in the most commonly deployed neutron detectors, a replacement technology for neutron detection is required for most detection systems in the very near future [Kouzes 2009a]. For homeland security applications, neutron false alarms from a detector can result in significant impact. This puts a strong requirement on any neutron detection technology not to generate false neutron counts in the presence of a large gamma ray-only source [Kouzes et al. 2008].
Date: April 28, 2010
Creator: Kouzes, Richard T. & Ely, James H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron-Lined Multichamber and Conventional Neutron Proportional Counter Tests

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. These technologies are: 1) Boron trifluoride (BF3)-filled proportional counters, 2) Boron-lined proportional counters, 3) Lithium-loaded glass fibers, and 4) Coated non-scintillating plastic fibers. In addition, a few other companies have detector technologies that might be competitive in the near term as an alternative technology. Reported here are the results of tests of a boron-lined, multichamber proportional counter manufactured by LND, Inc. Also reported are results obtained with an earlier design of conventional, boron-lined, proportional counters from LND. This testing measured the required performance for neutron detection efficiency and gamma-ray rejection capabilities of the detectors.
Date: September 7, 2010
Creator: Woodring, Mitchell L.; Ely, James H.; Kouzes, Richard T. & Stromswold, David C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron-Lined Multitube Neutron Proportional Counter Test

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. These technologies are: 1) Boron trifluoride (BF3)-filled proportional counters, 2) Boron-lined proportional counters, 3) Lithium-loaded glass fibers, and 4) Coated non-scintillating plastic fibers. In addition, a few other companies have detector technologies that might be competitive in the near term as an alternative technology. Reported here are the results of tests of a boron-lined, “multitube” proportional counter manufactured by Centronic Ltd. (Surry, U.K. and Houston, TX). This testing measured the required performance for neutron detection efficiency and gamma-ray rejection capabilities of the detector.
Date: September 7, 2010
Creator: Woodring, Mitchell L.; Ely, James H.; Kouzes, Richard T. & Stromswold, David C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Alternative Neutron Detection Testing Summary

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. Most currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large area neutron detector. This type of neutron detector is used in the TSA and other RPMs installed in international locations and in the Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation RPMs deployed primarily for domestic applications. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world and, thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. These technologies are: 1) Boron trifluoride-filled proportional counters, 2) Boron-lined proportional counters, 3) Lithium-loaded glass fibers, and 4) Coated wavelength-shifting plastic fibers. Reported here is a summary of the testing carried out at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory on these technologies to date, as well as measurements on 3He tubes at various pressures. Details on these measurements are available in the referenced reports. Sponsors of these tests include the Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Department of Defense (DoD), as well as internal Pacific Northwest National Laboratory funds.
Date: April 8, 2010
Creator: Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Erikson, Luke E.; Kernan, Warnick J.; Lintereur, Azaree T.; Siciliano, Edward R. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Lithium and Zinc Sulfide Coated Plastic Neutron Detector Test

Description: Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. In addition, a few other companies have detector technologies that might be competitive in the near term as an alternative technology. Reported here are the results of tests of 6Li/ZnS(Ag)-coated scintillator paddles. This testing measured the required performance for neutron detection efficiency and gamma ray rejection capabilities of a system manufactured by Symetrica.
Date: July 16, 2010
Creator: Kouzes, Richard T. & Ely, James H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department