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Title: Automated Nondestructive Assay of UF6 Cylinders: Detector Characterization and Initial Measurements

Abstract

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors currently perform periodic inspections at uranium enrichment plants to verify UF6 cylinder enrichment declarations. Measurements are typically performed with handheld high-resolution sensors on a sampling of cylinders assumed to be representative of the facility's entire cylinder inventory. These measurements are time-consuming and assay only a small fraction of the total cylinder volume. An automated nondestructive assay system capable of providing enrichment measurements over the full volume of the cylinder could improve upon current verification practices in terms of manpower and assay accuracy. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is developing an Integrated Cylinder Verification System (ICVS) intended for this purpose and has developed a field prototype of the nondestructive assay (NDA) components of an ICVS. The nondestructive assay methods would combine the 'traditional' enrichment-meter signature (i.e. 186-keV emission from 235U) as well as 'non-traditional' high-energy photon signatures derived from neutrons produced primarily by 19F({alpha},n) reactions. This paper describes the design, calibration and characterization of the NaI(Tl) and LaBr3(Ce) spectrometers utilized in the field prototype. An overview of a recent field measurement campaign is then provided, supported by example gamma-ray pulse-height spectra collected on cylinders of known enrichment.

Authors:
;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1030862
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-73397
NN4003070; TRN: US1106051
DOE Contract Number:  
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research. Section A, Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 652; Journal Issue: 1
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS; 38 RADIATION CHEMISTRY, RADIOCHEMISTRY, AND NUCLEAR CHEMISTRY; ACCURACY; CALIBRATION; DESIGN; IAEA; ISOTOPE SEPARATION PLANTS; MANPOWER; NEUTRONS; PHOTONS; SAMPLING; SENSORS; SPECTRA; SPECTROMETERS; VERIFICATION; nondestructive assay; nuclear fuel cycle; safeguards; UF6

Citation Formats

Mace, Emily K., and Smith, Leon E. Automated Nondestructive Assay of UF6 Cylinders: Detector Characterization and Initial Measurements. United States: N. p., 2011. Web. doi:10.1016/j.nima.2010.09.149.
Mace, Emily K., & Smith, Leon E. Automated Nondestructive Assay of UF6 Cylinders: Detector Characterization and Initial Measurements. United States. doi:10.1016/j.nima.2010.09.149.
Mace, Emily K., and Smith, Leon E. Sat . "Automated Nondestructive Assay of UF6 Cylinders: Detector Characterization and Initial Measurements". United States. doi:10.1016/j.nima.2010.09.149.
@article{osti_1030862,
title = {Automated Nondestructive Assay of UF6 Cylinders: Detector Characterization and Initial Measurements},
author = {Mace, Emily K. and Smith, Leon E.},
abstractNote = {International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors currently perform periodic inspections at uranium enrichment plants to verify UF6 cylinder enrichment declarations. Measurements are typically performed with handheld high-resolution sensors on a sampling of cylinders assumed to be representative of the facility's entire cylinder inventory. These measurements are time-consuming and assay only a small fraction of the total cylinder volume. An automated nondestructive assay system capable of providing enrichment measurements over the full volume of the cylinder could improve upon current verification practices in terms of manpower and assay accuracy. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is developing an Integrated Cylinder Verification System (ICVS) intended for this purpose and has developed a field prototype of the nondestructive assay (NDA) components of an ICVS. The nondestructive assay methods would combine the 'traditional' enrichment-meter signature (i.e. 186-keV emission from 235U) as well as 'non-traditional' high-energy photon signatures derived from neutrons produced primarily by 19F({alpha},n) reactions. This paper describes the design, calibration and characterization of the NaI(Tl) and LaBr3(Ce) spectrometers utilized in the field prototype. An overview of a recent field measurement campaign is then provided, supported by example gamma-ray pulse-height spectra collected on cylinders of known enrichment.},
doi = {10.1016/j.nima.2010.09.149},
journal = {Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research. Section A, Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment},
number = 1,
volume = 652,
place = {United States},
year = {2011},
month = {10}
}