Improved Solid-State Neutron Detector

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Energy
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$99,999.00
Award Year:
2008
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
DE-FG02-08ER86336
Award Id:
84961
Agency Tracking Number:
85876
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
15 Cabot Road, Woburn, MA, 01801
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
n/a
Principal Investigator:
Lawrence Domash
Dr
(781) 935-1200
Ldomash@agiltron.com
Business Contact:
Geoffrey Burnham
Dr
(781) 935-1200
Gburnham@agiltron.com
Research Institute:
University of California San Diego
Yuhwa Lo
Dept of Electrical & Computer
La Jolla, CA, 92093

Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
Improved methods of neutron detection are needed not only for nuclear physics research but also for international control of weapons and neutron based therapies in medical applications. He-3 tube-based neutron detectors and planar solid-state neutron detectors are the two currently available technologies for thermal neutron detection. Although He-3 tube-based neutron detectors have efficiencies up to 70 per cent, they are inherently costly and fragile, contain high gas pressures, and require high voltages to operate. These limitations restrict the environment in which they can be deployed and render them impractical as handheld devices. On the other hand, current solid-state detectors are compact, rugged, and operate at low voltages, but their neutron detection efficiencies are less than 5 per cent. This project will demonstrate a breakthrough detector for slow neutron detection, which overcomes the low sensitivity of current solid state detectors; holds the promise of improving the solid state neutron detector sensitivity to at least 70 per cent; is lightweight, compact, and radiation hard; and can be fabricated into a two dimensional array at a low cost. Phase I will demonstrate a detector element with high sensitivity. A fully functional arrayed detector will be developed in Phase II. Commercial Applications and other Benefits as described by the awardee: The detector technology would be expected to have commercialization potential in such applications as neutron detection for nuclear physics, homeland security, medical imaging, and industrial and environmental monitoring.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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