Neutron detectors made from chemically vapour deposited semiconductors

F. Foulon, P. Bergonzo, A. Brambilla, C. Jany, B. Guizard, R. D. Marshall

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    38 Scopus citations


    In this paper, we present the results of investigations on the use of semiconductors deposited by chemical vapour deposition (CVD) for the fabrication of neutron detectors. For this purpose, 20 μm thick hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) pin diodes and 100 μm thick polycrystalline diamond resistive detectors were fabricated. The detectors were coupled to a neutron-charged particle converter: a layer of either gadolinium or boron (isotope 10 enriched) deposited by evaporation. We have demonstrated the capability of such neutron detectors to operate at neutron fluxes ranging from 101 to 106 neutrons/cm2.s. The fabrication of large area detectors for neutron counting or cartography through the use of multichannel reading circuits is discussed. The advantages of these detectors include the ability to produce large area detectors at low cost, radiation hardness (approximately 4 Mrad for a-Si:H and approximately 100 Mrad for diamond), and for diamond, operation at temperatures up to 500 °C. These properties enable the use of these devices for neutron detection in harsh environments. Thermal neutron detection efficiency up to 22% and 3% are expected by coupling a-Si:H diodes and diamond detectors to 3 μm thick gadolinium (isotope 157) and 2 μm thick boron layers, respectively.

    Original languageBritish English
    Pages (from-to)591-596
    Number of pages6
    JournalMaterials Research Society Symposium - Proceedings
    StatePublished - 1998
    EventProceedings of the 1998 MRS Fall Symposium - Boston, MA, USA
    Duration: 1 Dec 19975 Dec 1997


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