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Title: Boron-Lined Multichamber and Conventional Neutron Proportional Counter Tests

Abstract

Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. These technologies are: 1) Boron trifluoride (BF3)-filled proportional counters, 2) Boron-lined proportional counters, 3) Lithium-loaded glass fibers, and 4) Coated non-scintillating plastic fibers. In addition, a few other companies have detector technologies that might be competitive in the near term as an alternative technology. Reported here are the results of tests of a boron-lined, multichamber proportional counter manufactured by LND, Inc. Also reported are results obtained with an earlier design of conventional, boron-lined, proportional counters frommore » LND. This testing measured the required performance for neutron detection efficiency and gamma-ray rejection capabilities of the detectors.« less

Authors:
; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
993348
Report Number(s):
PNNL-19725
NN2001000; TRN: US1008074
DOE Contract Number:
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS; AVAILABILITY; BORON; DESIGN; EFFICIENCY; FIBERS; FISSION NEUTRONS; GLASS; MONITORS; NEUTRON DETECTION; NEUTRON DETECTORS; NEUTRONS; PERFORMANCE; PLASTICS; PLUTONIUM; PROPORTIONAL COUNTERS; RADIATIONS; SENSITIVITY; TESTING; alternative neutron detection; 3He; LND

Citation Formats

Woodring, Mitchell L., Ely, James H., Kouzes, Richard T., and Stromswold, David C.. Boron-Lined Multichamber and Conventional Neutron Proportional Counter Tests. United States: N. p., 2010. Web. doi:10.2172/993348.
Woodring, Mitchell L., Ely, James H., Kouzes, Richard T., & Stromswold, David C.. Boron-Lined Multichamber and Conventional Neutron Proportional Counter Tests. United States. doi:10.2172/993348.
Woodring, Mitchell L., Ely, James H., Kouzes, Richard T., and Stromswold, David C.. Tue . "Boron-Lined Multichamber and Conventional Neutron Proportional Counter Tests". United States. doi:10.2172/993348. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/993348.
@article{osti_993348,
title = {Boron-Lined Multichamber and Conventional Neutron Proportional Counter Tests},
author = {Woodring, Mitchell L. and Ely, James H. and Kouzes, Richard T. and Stromswold, David C.},
abstractNote = {Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons are being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. These technologies are: 1) Boron trifluoride (BF3)-filled proportional counters, 2) Boron-lined proportional counters, 3) Lithium-loaded glass fibers, and 4) Coated non-scintillating plastic fibers. In addition, a few other companies have detector technologies that might be competitive in the near term as an alternative technology. Reported here are the results of tests of a boron-lined, multichamber proportional counter manufactured by LND, Inc. Also reported are results obtained with an earlier design of conventional, boron-lined, proportional counters from LND. This testing measured the required performance for neutron detection efficiency and gamma-ray rejection capabilities of the detectors.},
doi = {10.2172/993348},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Tue Sep 07 00:00:00 EDT 2010},
month = {Tue Sep 07 00:00:00 EDT 2010}
}

Technical Report:

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  • Radiation portal monitors used for interdiction of illicit materials at borders include highly sensitive neutron detection systems. The main reason for having neutron detection capability is to detect fission neutrons from plutonium. The currently deployed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) from Ludlum and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) use neutron detectors based upon 3He-filled gas proportional counters, which are the most common large neutron detector. There is a declining supply of 3He in the world, and thus, methods to reduce the use of this gas in RPMs with minimal changes to the current system designs and sensitivity to cargo-borne neutrons aremore » being investigated. Four technologies have been identified as being currently commercially available, potential alternative neutron detectors to replace the use of 3He in RPMs. These technologies are: 1) Boron trifluoride (BF3)-filled proportional counters, 2) Boron-lined proportional counters, 3) Lithium-loaded glass fibers, and 4) Coated non-scintillating plastic fibers. In addition, a few other companies have detector technologies that might be competitive in the near term as an alternative technology. Reported here are the results of tests of a boron-lined, “multitube” proportional counter manufactured by Centronic Ltd. (Surry, U.K. and Houston, TX). This testing measured the required performance for neutron detection efficiency and gamma-ray rejection capabilities of the detector.« less
  • The Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Safeguards (NA-241) is supporting the project 'Coincidence Counting With Boron-Based Alternative Neutron Detection Technology' at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for development of an alternative neutron coincidence counter. The goal of this project is to design, build and demonstrate a boron-lined proportional tube based system in the configuration of a coincidence counter. This report provides information about how variations in proportional counter radius and gas pressure in a typical coincident counter design might affect the observed signal from boron-lined tubes. A discussion comparing tubes to parallel plate counters is also included.
  • The Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Safeguards (NA-241) is supporting the project “Coincidence Counting With Boron-Based Alternative Neutron Detection Technology” at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the development of an alternative neutron coincidence counter. The goal of this project is to design, build and demonstrate a boron-lined proportional tube-based alternative system in the configuration of a coincidence counter. This report discusses the validation studies performed to establish the degree of accuracy of the computer modeling methods current used to simulate the response of boron-lined tubes. This is the precursor to developing models for the uranium neutron coincidence collarmore » under Task 2 of this project.« less