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Title: Empirical assessment of the detection efficiency of CR-39 at high proton fluence and a compact, proton detector for high-fluence applications

CR-39 solid-state nuclear track detectors are widely used in physics and in many inertial confinement fusion (ICF) experiments, and under ideal conditions these detectors have 100% detection efficiency for ~0.5–8 MeV protons. When the fluence of incident particles becomes too high, the overlap of particle tracks leads to under-counting at typical processing conditions (5h etch in 6N NaOH at 80°C). Short etch times required to avoid overlap can cause under-counting as well, as tracks are not fully developed. Experiments have determined the minimum etch times for 100% detection of 1.7–4.3-MeV protons and established that for 2.4-MeV protons, relevant for detection of DD protons, the maximum fluence that can be detected using normal processing techniques is ≲3 ×106 cm-2. A CR-39-based proton detector has been developed to mitigate issues related to high particle fluences on ICF facilities. Using a pinhole and scattering foil several mm in front of the CR-39, proton fluences at the CR-39 are reduced by more than a factor of ~50, increasing the operating yield upper limit by a comparable amount.
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  1. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
  2. Univ. of Rochester, Rochester, NY (United States)
  3. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
  4. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  5. General Atomics, San Diego, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Review of Scientific Instruments
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 85; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 0034-6748
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Research Org:
MIT (Massachusetts Inst. of Technology), Cambridge, MA (United States). Plasma Science and Fusion Center.
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY protons; etching; helium-3; inertial confinement; tantalum