EPJ Web Conf.
Volume 253, 2021ANIMMA 2021 – Advancements in Nuclear Instrumentation Measurement Methods and their Applications
|Number of page(s)||5|
|Section||Nuclear Power Reactor Monitoring and Control|
|Published online||19 November 2021|
Development of a Fast-Spectrum Self-Powered Neutron Detector for Molten Salt Experiments in the Versatile Test Reactor
Oak Ridge National Lab
Idaho National Lab, Massachussets Institute of Technology
Oak Ridge National Lab, and J. Hu, Oak Ridge National Lab
Corresponding author: email@example.com
Published online: 19 November 2021
The self-powered neutron detector (SPND) is a widely used flux monitor in thermal nuclear reactors. Although this is a mature technology, the current state of the art is tuned for a thermal neutron spectrum, so many of the devices currently in use lack sensitivity to fast neutrons. Because current in SPNDs is produced through nuclear reactions with the neutron flux inside a reactor, sensitivity in SPNDs is determined by the neutron cross section of the neutron-sensitive portion of the detector, termed the emitter. This neutron cross section drops by orders of magnitude between thermal and fast neutron energies for many emitters in currently used SPNDs, with a corresponding drop in current from the detector. This paper discusses efforts to develop a fast-spectrum self-powered neutron detector (FS-SPND) that is sensitive to neutrons with energies ranging from 0.025 eV up to 1 MeV. An in-depth analysis of Evaluated Nuclear Data File (ENDF)/B-VII.1 neutron-capture cross sections was performed, and four new materials were identified that are suitable emitter candidates for use in measuring fast neutrons. All four materials are stable mid-shell nuclei in the region between doubly magic 132Sn and 208Pb. Each candidate was simulated with the Geant4 Monte Carlo simulation toolkit to optimize overall detector efficiency.
Key words: fast-spectrum nuclear reactor / instrumentation and controls / nuclear reactor / self-powered neutron detector / sodium-cooled fast reactor / Versatile Test Reactor
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2021
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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