Locating, quantifying and characterising radiation hazards in contaminated nuclear facilities using a novel passive non-electrical polymer based radiation imaging device.
This paper provides a summary of recent trials which took place at the US Department of Energy Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) during December 2010. The overall objective for the trials was to demonstrate that a newly developed technology could be used to locate, quantify and characterise the radiological hazards within two separate ORNL hot cells (B and C). The technology used, known as RadBall(®), is a novel, passive, non-electrical polymer based radiation detection device which provides a 3D visualisation of radiation from areas where effective measurements have not been previously possible due to lack of access. This is particularly useful in the nuclear industry prior to the decommissioning of facilities where the quantity, location and type of contamination are often unknown. For hot cell B, the primary objective of demonstrating that the technology could be used to locate, quantify and characterise three radiological sources was met with 100% success. Despite more challenging conditions in hot cell C, two sources were detected and accurately located. To summarise, the technology performed extremely well with regards to detecting and locating radiation sources and, despite the challenging conditions, moderately well when assessing the relative energy and intensity of those sources. Due to the technology's unique deployability, non-electrical nature and its directional awareness the technology shows significant promise for the future characterisation of radiation hazards prior to and during the decommissioning of contaminated nuclear facilities.
Stanley, SJ; Lennox, K; Farfán, EB; Coleman, JR; Adamovics, J; Thomas, A; Oldham, M
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