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Fast Neutron Detection with a Segmented Spectrometer



Jeffrey S. Nico, T J. Langford, Christopher D. Bass, H Breuer, Craig Heimbach, D. K. Erwin


A fast neutron spectrometer consisting of segmented plastic scintillator and He-3 proportional counters was constructed for the measurement of neutrons in the energy range 1 MeV to 200 MeV. We discuss its design, principles of operation, and the method of analysis. The spectrometer was characterized for energy resolution and efficiency in fast neutron fields of 2.5 MeV, 14 MeV, and fission spectrum neutrons, and the results are compared with Monte Carlo simulations. Measurements of the fast neutron flux and energy response at 120 m above sea-level (39.130 degrees N, 77.218 degrees W) and at a depth of 560 m in a limestone mine are also presented. Finally, the design of a spectrometer with improved sensitivity and energy resolution is discussed.
Nuclear Instruments & Methods A


Capture gating, Fast neutron detection, Low background Neutron spectrometer, Underground physics


Nico, J. , Langford, T. , Bass, C. , Breuer, H. , Heimbach, C. and Erwin, D. (2014), Fast Neutron Detection with a Segmented Spectrometer, Nuclear Instruments & Methods A, [online],, (Accessed April 13, 2024)
Created November 3, 2014, Updated April 16, 2021