From Event: SPIE Optical Engineering + Applications, 2016
Plastic scintillators are widely deployed for ionizing radiation detection, as they can be fabricated in large sizes, for high detection efficiency. However commercial plastics are limited in use for gamma spectroscopy, since their photopeak is too weak, due to low Z, and they are also limited in use for neutron detection, since proton recoils are indistinguishable from other ionizing radiation absorption events in standard plastics. We are working on scale up and production of transparent plastic scintillators based on polystyrene (PS) with high loading of bismuth metallorganics for gamma spectroscopy, and with lithium metallorganics for neutron detection. When activated with standard organic fluors, PS scintillators containing 8 wt% bismuth provide energy resolution of 11% at 662 keV. A PS plastic formulation including 1.3 wt% lithium-6 provides a neutron capture peak at 525 keVee, with 11% resolution for the capture peak and 90% efficiency for thermal neutron capture in 2mm thickness.
This work was performed under the auspices of the U.S. DOE by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory under Contract DE-AC52-07NA27344, and has been supported by the US DOE National Nuclear Security Administration, Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Research and Development under Contract No. DE-AC03-76SF00098
H. Paul Martinez, Nerine J. Cherepy, Robert D. Sanner, Patrick R. Beck, Eric L. Swanberg, and Stephen A. Payne, "Bismuth- and lithium-loaded plastic scintillators for gamma and neutron detection
(Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 9968, Hard X-Ray, Gamma-Ray, and Neutron Detector Physics XVIII, 99680Q (Presented at SPIE Optical Engineering + Applications: August 30, 2016; Published: 2 November 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2238243.5178382268001.
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