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Portable Spectrometers


Development of Mini-spectrometers of Gamma-radiation for Quick Detection of Radionuclides Incorporated in a Human Body

Tech Area / Field

  • INS-DET/Detection Devices/Instrumentation

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
VNIITFA, Russia, Moscow

Supporting institutes

  • Siberian Branch of RAS / Institute of Semiconductor Physics, Russia, Novosibirsk reg., Novosibirsk\nHead Centre of Sanepidemcontrol, Russia, Moscow

Project summary

The purpose of the present Project is to develop and to create a new class of human body radiation spectrometers (HBRS) which should be compact and convenient for normal and critical conditions. Spectrometers will be made on the basis of uncooled semiconductor detectors (UCSD) and intended for plutonium detection, plutonium disintegration products and other radionuclides incorporated in a human body.

The problem of monitoring radiation level at various nuclear facilities operating for civil, defense and scientific purposes, is of great importance now. The consequences of Kyshtym and Chernobyl catastrophes and technogenic accidents similar to them make the problem even more acute.

In future accumulation of plutonium, americium, caesium and other radionuclides will become the most significant dose-forming factor of irradiation.

As the result of the fulfillment of the present Project it will become possible to register X-Ray and gamma-radiation which accompanies disintegration of isotopes of plutonium number (238, 239, 240Pu, 241Am and others) with the help of semiconductor detectors which do not require any cooling during their operation, and make it possible to create portable precision devices for field, out-of-lab and even within-cavity measurements.

Uncooled semiconductor detectors (UCSD) are used as recording systems. They are made on the basis of crystals of broad-zonal semiconductors with a number of properties. In this Project for manufacturing discrete and matrix detectors sensitive to X-Ray and gamma-radiation which accompanies disintegration of plutonium isotopes and other radionuclides, the preference is given di-iodide of mercury and highly pure and high-resistance silicon.

The aim set in the Project is to be achieved through step-by-step solution of the following problems:

— Development of the technique of obtaining monocrystals HgI2, CdZnTe, Si with detecting characteristics.
— Development of the technique of creating spectrometric detecting structures on the basis of di-iodide of mercury.
— Development of methods of manufacturing silicon semiconductor detectors for X-Ray radiation using planar technology.
— Development of optimal scheme-technical structures and design of Human Body Radiation Spectrometers (HBRS) of different types.
— Development of scientifically proved medico-physical technique of target application of HBRS.
— Development, manufacture and test of specimen of HBRS of outside and within-cavity type in real conditions.
— Development of techniques of measurement and software for processing spectrometric information.

The realization of the given Project will allow to create scientifically proved technological basis for industrial production of HBRS for quick detection of products of radioactive disintegration in a human body.

Developed during the fulfillment of the present Project uncooled spectrometric detectors are rather promising and could be used in such areas as nuclear production and atomic engineering, geology, metallurgy, astrophysics, criminology and many others.

At the same time the results of the Project can lay the basis for a new indirect method of locating regions of development, production and storage of nuclear weapon in third countries.


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