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Nuclear Safeguards Education Portal

What Sorts of Detectors Do We Use?

Using Detectors in the Laboratory
Using Detectors in the Laboratory 

We use all of the following detector systems in nuclear material safeguards:

  1. Gas-Filled Detectors

    Examples: ion chamber, Geiger-Mueller Counter, proportional counters, Helium-3 (3He), Boron Trifluoride (BF3), and fission chambers

  2. Scintillation Detectors

    Examples: Sodium Iodide (NaI) and Lanthanum Bromide (LaBr)

  3. Semiconductor Detectors

    Examples: High-Purity Germanium (HPGe) and Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CdZnTe)

  4. Calorimetry

    Examples: isothermal calorimeters

  5. Mass Spectroscopy

    Examples: ICP-MS, IDMS, TIMS, SIMS

In this module, you will learn about the first three types of detectors. This will include a description of their physical mechanisms for detection, their basic operation, and some advantages and disadvantages for each detector type.

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