Solid-State Neutron Detectors with Integrated Electronics for Nuclear Physics

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-SC0011280
Agency Tracking Number: 209935
Amount: $149,999.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2014
Solicitation Year: 2014
Solicitation Topic Code: 39b
Solicitation Number: DE-FOA-0000969
Small Business Information
44 Hunt Street, Watertown, MA, 02472-4699
DUNS: 073804411
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Christopher Stapels
 (617) 668-6801
Business Contact
 Carmen Danforth
Title: Ms.
Phone: (617) 668-6801
Research Institution
At present, detectors of fast neutrons use liquid scintillators liquid scintillators can be dangerous to handle due to their low flash points and bulkiness, and the readout of the liquid scintillator by large PMTs limits the available position resolution and ability to operate in high magnetic fields. Large arrays of detectors are hampered by the large cost of many channels of electronics and the potential for data pile up in fully digital systems. The goal of this program is to develop a basic module that can be used to build larger detector systems with multiple position sensing elements. We will further develop newly discovered plastic scintillators that have neutron versus gamma pulse shape discrimination and couple them to solid state detectors. We will optimize the light collection and determine the useful energy range while choosing the appropriate level of electronics integration to make a useful module. The proposed effort combines RMDs plastic scintillators with its solid-state optical detectors to develop a segmented spectroscopic neutron detector for systems. We will tune the compositions and then fabricate these novel plastic scintillators by using standard polymerization techniques. Subsequently, we will couple them to solid-state detectors and maximize the light collection. We will fabricate and test critical components to demonstrate feasibility in the Phase-I effort. Detector scale-up issues and implementation for nuclear physics research will be addressed in the Phase II stage. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: The proposed detector technology can be used to develop major neutron detection systems at multiple university and national labs across the USA, and additional sites worldwide. The technology is also promising for nuclear- nonproliferation, other neutron imaging systems, astronomy, and non-destructive testing.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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