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Title: The D-D Neutron Generator as an Alternative to Am(Li) Isotopic Neutron Source in the Active Well Coincidence Counter

Abstract

The 235U mass assay of bulk uranium items, such as oxide canisters, fuel pellets, and fuel assemblies, is not achievable by traditional gamma-ray assay techniques due to the limited penetration of the item by the characteristic 235U gamma rays. Instead, fast neutron interrogation methods such as active neutron coincidence counting must be used. For international safeguards applications, the most commonly used active neutron systems, the Active Well Coincidence Counter (AWCC), Uranium Neutron Collar (UNCL) and 252Cf Shuffler, rely on fast neutron interrogation using an isotopic neutron source [i.e., 252Cf or Am(Li)] to achieve better measurement accuracies than are possible using gamma-ray techniques for high-mass, high-density items. However, the Am(Li) sources required for the AWCC and UNCL systems are no longer manufactured, and newly produced systems rely on limited supplies of sources salvaged from disused instruments. The 252Cf shuffler systems rely on the use of high-output 252Cf sources, which while still available have become extremely costly for use in routine operations and require replacement every five to seven years. Lack of a suitable alternative neutron interrogation source would leave a potentially significant gap in the safeguarding of uranium processing facilities. In this work, we made use of Oak Ridge National Laboratory’smore » (ORNL’s) Large Volume Active Well Coincidence Counter (LV-AWCC) and a commercially available deuterium-deuterium (D-D) neutron generator to examine the potential of the D-D neutron generator as an alternative to the isotopic sources. We present the performance of the LV-AWCC with D-D generator for the assay of 235U based on the results of Monte Carlo N-Particle (MCNP) simulations and measurements of depleted uranium (DU), low enriched uranium (LEU), and highly enriched uranium (HEU) items.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1]
  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1346681
Report Number(s):
ORNL/TM-2017/57
DN4001030; MDGA517
DOE Contract Number:  
AC05-00OR22725
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
73 NUCLEAR PHYSICS AND RADIATION PHYSICS

Citation Formats

McElroy, Robert Dennis, and Cleveland, Steven L. The D-D Neutron Generator as an Alternative to Am(Li) Isotopic Neutron Source in the Active Well Coincidence Counter. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1346681.
McElroy, Robert Dennis, & Cleveland, Steven L. The D-D Neutron Generator as an Alternative to Am(Li) Isotopic Neutron Source in the Active Well Coincidence Counter. United States. doi:10.2172/1346681.
McElroy, Robert Dennis, and Cleveland, Steven L. Wed . "The D-D Neutron Generator as an Alternative to Am(Li) Isotopic Neutron Source in the Active Well Coincidence Counter". United States. doi:10.2172/1346681. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1346681.
@article{osti_1346681,
title = {The D-D Neutron Generator as an Alternative to Am(Li) Isotopic Neutron Source in the Active Well Coincidence Counter},
author = {McElroy, Robert Dennis and Cleveland, Steven L.},
abstractNote = {The 235U mass assay of bulk uranium items, such as oxide canisters, fuel pellets, and fuel assemblies, is not achievable by traditional gamma-ray assay techniques due to the limited penetration of the item by the characteristic 235U gamma rays. Instead, fast neutron interrogation methods such as active neutron coincidence counting must be used. For international safeguards applications, the most commonly used active neutron systems, the Active Well Coincidence Counter (AWCC), Uranium Neutron Collar (UNCL) and 252Cf Shuffler, rely on fast neutron interrogation using an isotopic neutron source [i.e., 252Cf or Am(Li)] to achieve better measurement accuracies than are possible using gamma-ray techniques for high-mass, high-density items. However, the Am(Li) sources required for the AWCC and UNCL systems are no longer manufactured, and newly produced systems rely on limited supplies of sources salvaged from disused instruments. The 252Cf shuffler systems rely on the use of high-output 252Cf sources, which while still available have become extremely costly for use in routine operations and require replacement every five to seven years. Lack of a suitable alternative neutron interrogation source would leave a potentially significant gap in the safeguarding of uranium processing facilities. In this work, we made use of Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s (ORNL’s) Large Volume Active Well Coincidence Counter (LV-AWCC) and a commercially available deuterium-deuterium (D-D) neutron generator to examine the potential of the D-D neutron generator as an alternative to the isotopic sources. We present the performance of the LV-AWCC with D-D generator for the assay of 235U based on the results of Monte Carlo N-Particle (MCNP) simulations and measurements of depleted uranium (DU), low enriched uranium (LEU), and highly enriched uranium (HEU) items.},
doi = {10.2172/1346681},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Mar 01 00:00:00 EST 2017},
month = {Wed Mar 01 00:00:00 EST 2017}
}

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