Innovation and Partnerships Office

Fast Pulsed Neutron Generator IB-2752

APPLICATIONS OF TECHNOLOGY:

  • Detection of explosives and special nuclear material (SNM)
  • Analysis of spent fuel and nuclear waste

ADVANTAGES:

  • Less complicated and more efficient than other beam pulsing techniques
  • Low level of background neutrons
  • Improves detection by both Differential Die-Away (DDA) Analysis and by Pulsed Fast Neutron Transmission Spectroscopy (PFNTS)
  • Can be used with axial and coaxial neutron generators

ABSTRACT:

Joe Kwan and Qing Ji of Berkeley Lab have invented a technology for obtaining short pulse width, fast fall time ion beams by applying gating to one of the extraction electrodes in a multi-aperture extraction system. Using a low voltage beam extraction and gating system, the fall off time of the extracted ion beam pulses was 0.15 microseconds.

The Berkeley Lab technology can be used for detection of fissile material by DDA analysis and for the detection of explosives by PFNTS. Fast fall-off of the neutron pulse and low neutron background improve the DDA signal, and, as a result, SNM detection. For PFNTS, short pulses facilitate the necessary time of flight measurements.

STATUS: Patent pending. Available for licensing or collaborative research.
                         
DEVELOPMENT STATUS: Proven principle. Some testing has been completed.

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

Q. Ji, J. Kwan, M. Regis, Y. Wu, S. B. Wilde, J. Wallig, “Fast Fall-time Ion Beam in Neutron Generators,” 20th International Conference on the Application of Accelerators in Research and Industry, Fort Worth, Texas, August 10-15, 2008, AIP conference proceeding, volume 1099, page 660-665.

Q. Ji, M. Regis, and J. W. Kwan, “Fast Pulsing Neutron Generators for Security Application,” Particle Accelerator Conference, Vancouver, Canada, May 4-8, 2009.

SEE THESE OTHER BERKELEY LAB TECHNOLOGIES IN THIS FIELD:

Mini Neutron Tube, IB-1793a

Neutron-based System for Nondestructive Imaging, IB-1794

Cylindrical Neutron Generator with Nested Option, IB-1764

REFERENCE NUMBER: IB-2752