Atomic Energy

, Volume 127, Issue 1, pp 51–55 | Cite as

Use of Neutron Scintillation Detectors as a Substitute for Helium-3 Counters in Radiation Monitors

  • E. V. RyabevaEmail author
  • V. V. Kadilin
  • V. A. Idalov

The purpose of this work is to analyze the use of detecting materials in radiation monitors as well as the replacement of widely used 3H-based neutron counters by neutron-detection scintillation technology. The replacement of helium counters is a consequence of two factors: the lack of 3He and widespread use of 3He-based counters in safety equipment, such as volumetric neutron detectors. Selection criteria for evaluating promising technologies are used in this work, specifically, high absolute neutron detection efficiency – efficiency at least 1.5 counts in 1 sec in detecting 1 ng 252Cf at distance of 2 m in a 20 mm thick moderator and low sensitivity to γ-ray detection – γ-ray detection efficiency not exceeding 10–6 with irradiation by a 0.1 μSv/h γ-ray source. Since they can have a large sensitive area and high resolution, scintillation detectors are now being proposed as alternatives to helium counters. But it is necessary to find an optimal scintillator possessing simultaneously low sensitivity to γ-radiation and to choose an optimal method of measuring information. Promising neutron detection technologies based on the glasses Li2OSiO2:Ce3+, LiF/ZnS(Ag+), Li6Gd(BO3)3:Ce, Cs2LiYCl6(Ce) (CLYC) as well as EJ-254 boron-doped plastic are examined from the standpoint of the posed problems.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    G. Rich, K. Kazkaz, N. Martinez, and T. Gushue, “Fabrication and characterization of a lithium-glass-based composite neutron detector,” Nucl. Instrum. Meth. in Phys. Res., A794, 15–24 (2015).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    J. McMillan and E. Marsden, “Neutron detector for security application john,” in:19th Int. Workshop on Vertex Detectors VERTEX21010, UK (2010), code 140182.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    R. Kouzes, J. Ely, L. Erikson, et al., “Neutron detection alternative for 3He for national security application,” Nucl. Instrum. Meth. in Phys. Res., A623, No. 3, 1035–1045 (2010).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Neutron Detectors. Alternatives to Using Helium-3, GAO-11-753, USA (2011).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    J. Glodo, W. Higgins, E. Loef, et al., “Scintillation properties of 1 inch Cs2LiYCl6: Ce crystals,” IEEE Trans. Nucl. Sci., 55, No. 3, 1206–1209 (2008).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    J. Glodo, E. Loef, R. Hawrami, et al., “Selected properties of Cs2LiYC16, Cs2LiLaCl6, and Cs2LiLaYBr6 scintillators,” IEEE Trans. Nucl. Sci., 58, No. 1, 333–338 (2011).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    E. I. Zaitsev, A. I. Ivanov, R. R. Usmanov, et al., Patent No. 2488142 RF, “Scintillation neutron detector,” subm. June 20, 2012.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    V. N. Marin, R. A. Sadykov, D. N. Trunov, et al., “A new type of scintillation thermal neutron detectors based on ZnS(Ag)/LiF and avalanche photodiodes,” Pisma Zh. Tekh. Fiz., 41, No. 18, 96–101 (2015).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    N. A. Sedunova, V. Yu. Ivanov, V. N. Churmanov, et al., “Luminescent properties of scintillation fi ber neutron detectors,” Izv. Vyssh. Ucheb. Zaved., Fiz., No. 1/3, 212 (2011).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Z. Fu, Fan Yang, Shangke Pan, and Ming Qi, “Neutron detection properties of Li6Y (BO3)3: Ce crystal,” Rad. Measur., 72, No. 1, 39–43 (2015).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    C. Eijik, A. Besseiere, and P. Dorenbos, “Inorganic thermal-neutron scintillators,” Nucl. Instrum. Meth. Phys. Res., A529, 260–267 (2004).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    V. Grinhoven, R. Kouzes, and R. Stephens, Alternative Neutron Detection Technology for Homeland Security, PNNL-18471 (2009).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    R. Kouzes, J. Ely, A. Lintereur, and D. Stephens, Neutron Detector Gamma Intensivity Criteria, PNNL-18903 (2009).Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    R. Kouzes, The 3He Supply Problem, PNNL-18388 (2009).Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    M. Williamson, Multivarriate Optimization of Neutron Detectors Through Modeling: PhD Dis., Univ. of Tennessee (2010).Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    G. Knoll, Radiation Detection and Measurement, J. Wiley & Sons, US (2010), 4rd ed.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    A. I. Abramov, Principles of Experimental Methods of Nuclear Physics, Atomizdat, Moscow (1977).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Research Nuclear University MEPhI (Moscow Engineering Physics Institute)MoscowRussia

Personalised recommendations