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Title: Fast neutron background characterization with the Radiological Multi-sensor Analysis Platform (RadMAP)

In an effort to characterize the fast neutron radiation background, 16 EJ-309 liquid scintillator cells were installed in the Radiological Multi-sensor Analysis Platform (RadMAP) to collect data in the San Francisco Bay Area. Each fast neutron event was associated with specific weather metrics (pressure, temperature, absolute humidity) and GPS coordinates. Furthermore, the expected exponential dependence of the fast neutron count rate on atmospheric pressure was demonstrated and event rates were subsequently adjusted given the measured pressure at the time of detection. Pressure adjusted data was also used to investigate the influence of other environmental conditions on the neutron background rate. Using National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) coastal area lidar data, an algorithm was implemented to approximate sky-view factors (the total fraction of visible sky) for points along RadMAPs route. In the three areas we analyzed, San Francisco, Downtown Oakland, and Berkeley, all demonstrated a suppression in the background rate of over 50% for the range of sky-view factors measured. This effect, which is due to the shielding of cosmic-ray produced neutrons by surrounding buildings, was comparable to the pressure influence which yielded a 32% suppression in the count rate over the range of pressures measured.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); United States Military Academy, West Point, NY (United States)
  2. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-CA), Livermore, CA (United States)
  3. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0168-9002; PII: S0168900217303820; TRN: US1702504
Grant/Contract Number:
AC04-94AL85000; AC02-05CH11231
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research. Section A, Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 858; Journal Issue: C; Journal ID: ISSN 0168-9002
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation (NA-20)
Country of Publication:
United States
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY; Fast neutron detection; Liquid scintillator; Background radiation; Radiation detection; Mobile detection system
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1458500