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Microcalorimeter Alpha Spectrometer for Analysis of Nuclear Material

Award Information

Department of Commerce
National Institute of Standards and Technology
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2009 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
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Small Business Information
STAR Cryoelectronics, LLC
25 Bisbee Court Ste A Santa Fe, NM 87508-1338
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2009
Title: Microcalorimeter Alpha Spectrometer for Analysis of Nuclear Material
Agency / Branch: DOC / NIST
Contract: N/A
Award Amount: $300,000.00


A key factor of international efforts to identify and suppress the supply of and demand for nuclear materials, and thereby to deter potential traffickers, is the ability to accurately identify contradicted material and ultimately to trace it back to its origin. Alpha particle spectroscopy is widely used in nuclear forensics to assay trace quantities of sensitive nuclear materials, but the limited spectral resolution of conventional alpha spectrometers limits their effectiveness to perform high-accuracy assays of such materials. STAR Cryoelectronics proposes to develop a high-resolution alpha spectrometer based on microcalorimeter detectors offering nearly a ten-fold improvement in energy resolution, thereby enabling the detection of minute isotopic compositional differences in sensitive nuclear materials. The innovative spectrometer requires only electrical power to operate, is completely automated, and will greatly increase the accuracy and throughput of current protocols for alpha spectroscopy.

Principal Investigator:

Business Contact:

Small Business Information at Submission:

STAR Cryoelectronics
25-A Bisbee Court Santa Fe, NM 87508

Number of Employees: N/A
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No