17 September 2008 Neutron imaging of radioactive sources
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Abstract
Isotopic neutron sources have been available for more than six decades. At the Atomic Institute in Vienna, operating a 250 kW TRIGA reactor, different neutron sources are in use for instrument calibration and fast neutron applications but we have only little information about their construction and densities. The knowledge of source design is essential for a complete MCNP5 modeling of the experiments. Neutron radiography (NR) and neutron tomography (NT) are the best choices for the non-destructive inspection of the source geometry and homogeneity. From the transmission analysis we gain information about the shielding components and the densities of the radio-isotopes in the cores. Three neutron sources, based on (alpha, n) reaction, have been investigated, two 239PuBe sources and one 241AmBe source. In the NR images the internal structure was clearly revealed using high-resolving scintillation and imaging plate detectors. In one source tablet a crack was detected which causes asymmetric neutron emission. The tomography inspection of strong absorbing materials is more challenging due to the low beam intensity of 1.3x105 n/cm2s at our NT instrument, and due to the beam hardening effect which requires an extension of reconstruction software. The tomographic inspection of a PuBe neutron source and appropriate measures for background and beam hardening correction are presented.
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F. Hameed, F. Hameed, S. Karimzadeh, S. Karimzadeh, M. Zawisky, M. Zawisky, } "Neutron imaging of radioactive sources", Proc. SPIE 7080, Penetrating Radiation Systems and Applications IX, 70800H (17 September 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.794776; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.794776
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