Diamond based detectors for high temperature, high radiation environments
© 2017 IOP Publishing Ltd and Sissa Medialab srl. Single crystal CVD diamond has many desirable properties as a radiation detector; exceptional radiation hardness and physical hardness, chemical inertness, low Z (close to human tissue, good for dosimetry and transmission mode applications), wide bandgap (high temperature operation with low noise and solar blind), an intrinsic pathway to fast neutron detection through the 12C(n,α)9Be reaction. This combination of radiation hardness, temperature tolerance and ability to detect mixed radiation types with a single sensor makes diamond particularly attractive as a detector material for harsh environments such as nuclear power station monitoring (fission and fusion) and oil well logging. Effective exploitation of these properties requires the development of a metallisation scheme to give contacts that remain stable over extended periods at elevated temperatures (up to 250°C in this instance). Due to the cost of the primary detector material, computational modelling is essential to best utilise the available processing methods for optimising sensor response through geometry and conversion media configurations and to fully interpret experimental data. Monte Carlo simulations of our diamond based sensor have been developed, using MCNP6 and FLUKA2011, assessing the sensor performance in terms of spectral response and overall efficiency as a function of the detector and converter geometry. Sensors with varying metallisation schemes for high temperature operation have been fabricated at Brunel University London and by Micron Semiconductor Limited. These sensors have been tested under a varied set of conditions including irradiation with fast neutrons and alpha particles at high temperatures. The presented study indicates that viable metallisation schemes for high temperature contacts have been successfully developed and the modelling results, supported by preliminary experimental data from partners, indicate that the simulations provide a reasonable representation of detector response.
Metcalfe, A; Fern, GR; Hobson, PR; Smith, DR; Lefeuvre, G; Saenger, R
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