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Title: Scintillation and luminescence in transparent colorless single and polycrystalline bulk ceramic ZnS

ZnS:Ag is a well-known extremely bright scintillator used in powder form for α-particle detection and, mixed with powdered LiF, for thermal neutron detection. Recently, we discovered some commercial bulk colorless and transparent, single-crystal and polycrystalline (chemical vapor-deposited) ZnS forms that scintillate in response to α-particles. The scintillation light transmits through the sample thickness (mm), challenging the commonly held assumption that ZnS is opaque to its own scintillation light. Individual α-particle events were imaged in space and time using a charged-particle camera originally developed for medical imaging applications. Photoluminescence (PL) and PL excitation show that scintillating bulk ZnS likely depends on different electronic defects than commercial ZnS powder scintillators. These defects, associated with copper and oxygen, are discussed in relation to PL results and extensive literature assessment. Commercial transparent ZnS is routinely produced by chemical vapor deposition to sizes larger than square meters, enabling potentially novel radiation detection applications requiring large, thick apertures.
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Resource Type:
Journal Article
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Journal Name: Journal of Luminescence, 157:416-423
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States
ZnS; alpha particle scintillator; photoluminescence; phosphor