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Title: Muon Tracking to Detect Special Nuclear Materials

Abstract

Previous experiments have proven that nuclear assemblies can be imaged and identified inside of shipping containers using vertical trajectory cosmic-ray muons with two-sided imaging. These experiments have further demonstrated that nuclear assemblies can be identified by detecting fission products in coincidence with tracked muons. By developing these technologies, advanced sensors can be designed for a variety of warhead monitoring and detection applications. The focus of this project is to develop tomographic-mode imaging using near-horizontal trajectory muons in conjunction with secondary particle detectors. This will allow imaging in-situ without the need to relocate the objects and will enable differentiation of special nuclear material (SNM) from other high-Z materials.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [2];  [2];  [2];  [2];  [2];  [2];  [3];  [3];  [3];  [3];  [1]
  1. NSTec
  2. LANL
  3. UW
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Nevada Test Site/National Security Technologies, LLC (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation (NA-20)
OSTI Identifier:
1137133
Report Number(s):
DOE/NV/25946-1723
DOE Contract Number:
DE-AC52-06NA25946
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: Nuclear Weapons and Material Security Team Program Review Meeting; April 9-11, 2013
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
muon, special nuclear material, SNM

Citation Formats

Schwellenbach, D., Dreesen, W., Green, J. A., Tibbitts, A., Schotik, G., Borozdin, K., Bacon, J., Midera, H., Milner, C., Morris, C., Perry, J., Barrett, S., Perry, K., Scott, A., Wright, C., and Aberle, D. Muon Tracking to Detect Special Nuclear Materials. United States: N. p., 2013. Web.
Schwellenbach, D., Dreesen, W., Green, J. A., Tibbitts, A., Schotik, G., Borozdin, K., Bacon, J., Midera, H., Milner, C., Morris, C., Perry, J., Barrett, S., Perry, K., Scott, A., Wright, C., & Aberle, D. Muon Tracking to Detect Special Nuclear Materials. United States.
Schwellenbach, D., Dreesen, W., Green, J. A., Tibbitts, A., Schotik, G., Borozdin, K., Bacon, J., Midera, H., Milner, C., Morris, C., Perry, J., Barrett, S., Perry, K., Scott, A., Wright, C., and Aberle, D. Mon . "Muon Tracking to Detect Special Nuclear Materials". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1137133.
@article{osti_1137133,
title = {Muon Tracking to Detect Special Nuclear Materials},
author = {Schwellenbach, D. and Dreesen, W. and Green, J. A. and Tibbitts, A. and Schotik, G. and Borozdin, K. and Bacon, J. and Midera, H. and Milner, C. and Morris, C. and Perry, J. and Barrett, S. and Perry, K. and Scott, A. and Wright, C. and Aberle, D.},
abstractNote = {Previous experiments have proven that nuclear assemblies can be imaged and identified inside of shipping containers using vertical trajectory cosmic-ray muons with two-sided imaging. These experiments have further demonstrated that nuclear assemblies can be identified by detecting fission products in coincidence with tracked muons. By developing these technologies, advanced sensors can be designed for a variety of warhead monitoring and detection applications. The focus of this project is to develop tomographic-mode imaging using near-horizontal trajectory muons in conjunction with secondary particle detectors. This will allow imaging in-situ without the need to relocate the objects and will enable differentiation of special nuclear material (SNM) from other high-Z materials.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Mar 18 00:00:00 EDT 2013},
month = {Mon Mar 18 00:00:00 EDT 2013}
}

Conference:
Other availability
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  • In order to help control the threat of nuclear proliferation, the US Department of Energy (DOE) and the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) have developed a system to track special nuclear materials (SNM). This system allows the government to know exactly how much SNM is located in any one licensed facility in the United States. The system described in this paper is the first computer program to fully automate the entire tracking process. The program, called Mtrac, prints facsimiles of all required NRC accountability reports such as the DOE/NRC 741, 742, 742C, and RW-859 in a form that meets allmore » current accountability requirements. Mtrac can perform a complete core refueling in a way that is almost transparent to the user, it can allocate track country control codes, and it is designed to handle assembly consolidation and reconstitution. Although the system was originally designed for commercial light water reactors, the program can be adapted to track SNM in any licensed facility.« less
  • The detection and interdiction of special nuclear material (SNM) is still a high-priority focus area for many organizations around the world. One method that is commonly considered a leading candidate in the detection of SNM is active interrogation (AI). AI is different from its close relative, passive interrogation, in that an active source is used to enhance or create a detectable signal (usually fission) from SNM, particularly in shielded scenarios or scenarios where the SNM has a low activity. The use of AI thus makes the detection of SNM easier or, in some scenarios, even enables previously impossible detection. Inmore » this work the signal from prompt neutrons and photons as well as delayed neutrons and photons will be combined, as is typically done in AI. In previous work AI has been evaluated experimentally and computationally. However, for the purposes of this work, past scenarios are considered lightly shielded and tightly coupled spatially. At most, the previous work interrogated the contents of one standard cargo container (2.44 x 2.60 x 6.10 m) and the source and detector were both within a few meters of the object being interrogated. A few examples of this type of previous work can be found in references 1 and 2. Obviously, more heavily shielded AI scenarios will require larger source intensities, larger detector surface areas (larger detectors or more detectors), greater detector efficiencies, longer count times, or some combination of these.« less
  • A system for inspecting cargo for the presence of special nuclear material. The cargo is irradiated with neutrons. The neutrons produce fission products in the special nuclear material which generate gamma rays. The gamma rays are detecting indicating the presence of the special nuclear material.
  • A system for inspecting cargo for the presence of special nuclear material. The cargo is irradiated with neutrons. The neutrons produce fission products in the special nuclear material which generate gamma rays. The gamma rays are detecting indicating the presence of the special nuclear material.
  • This paper discusses the problem of detecting explosives in the context of an object being transported for illicit purposes. The author emphasizes that technologies developed for this particular application have payoffs in many related problem areas. The author discusses nuclear techniques which can be applied to this detection problem. These include: x-ray imaging; neutronic interrogation; inelastic neutron scattering; fieldable neutron generators. He discusses work which has been done on the applications of these technologies, including results for detection of narcotics. He also discusses efforts to integrate these techniques into complementary systems which offer improved performance.