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Nuclear Science and Engineering
Fusion Science and Technology
The reality of radiation
Rep. Brandon Williams
Rep. Byron Donalds
For many Americans, the word “radiation” is often associated with fear of the unknown, yet the medical and scientific reality is that radiation is ever present in nature and beneficial to human life. The truth behind radiation historically has been distorted and stigmatized—even the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission recognizes that “radiation is naturally present in our environment, as it has been since before the birth of this planet.”
To embrace a responsible, low-carbon energy future, the American public should be aware of the beneficial applications of radiation, instead of fearing it due to unsubstantiated hysteria generated by opponents of responsible nuclear energy.
Gang Li, Ghaouti Bentoumi, Liqian Li
Nuclear Technology | Volume 208 | Number 7 | July 2022 | Pages 1214-1222
Technical Paper | doi.org/10.1080/00295450.2021.2011672
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
Organic liquid scintillators, such as EJ-309, are capable of detecting fast neutrons and discriminating gamma rays through pulse shape. Higher detection efficiency is a common objective for detector designs and research. This paper describes two methods to enhance fast neutron detection by increasing neutron collection and reducing gamma-ray interference. Neutron collection can be increased by using strong scattering material to reflect neutrons toward scintillators. Gamma-ray interference can be reduced by using heavy material to shield gamma rays; such a material could have a minimal impact on neutron detection because neutrons and gamma rays have different interaction cross sections. In this work, both effects were investigated, experimentally and by simulation. Using a graphite reflector with simple geometry, the fast neutron detection was measured to have an increase of 9%, and simulations predicted an approximately 50% increase for optimized geometry. Using a lead shielding of 8-mm thickness, the neutron detection with a Pu source was measured to have a factor of 2 increase. These methods could be useful when cost-effective and highly efficient fast neutron detection is desired.