Optical Gain Measurements for a Portable Plastic-Scintillator-Based Muon Tomography System


  1. Moats, K.
Corporate Authors
Defence Research and Development Canada, Ottawa Research Centre, Ottawa ON (CAN);Zernam Enterprises Inc., Ottawa ON (CAN)
A portable plastic-scintillator-based muon tomography system could be used by the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) to image suspect Special Nuclear Material (SNM) objects that are approximately 1 m³. The main challenge for image reconstruction in a portable muon tomography system is achieving a precise angular resolution. In order to do so, the optical yield of the scintillator bars must be improved. The work in this report focuses on determining the optical gain that could be achieved in such a system by inserting optical couplers between the plastic triangular scintillating bars and the wavelength shifting fibres. This report considers four optical couplers, namely water, BC 630, EJ 500, and NOA 63, as well as de-gassed BC 630, EJ 500, and NOA 63. Test data for this system using cosmic-ray muon sources was collected at DRDC Ottawa Research Centre and was analyzed by writing code in C++ with the ROOT analysis package. It was found that the measured optical gain values are quite similar for each optical coupler. It was also found that de-gassing the optical couplers had no noticeable effect on the optical gain. Either of the optical couplers considered in this study, whether de-gassed or not, are capable of improving the optical yield of a portable plastic-scintillator-based muon tomography prototype by approximately 40%. Further study is needed to determine how much these optical couplers will improve the tracking and position resolution of a portable muon tomography system, whi
radiation detection;special nuclear material;tomography;muon;muon tomography;plastic scintillator
Report Number
DRDC-RDDC-2017-C102 — Contract Report
Date of publication
01 May 2017
Number of Pages
Electronic Document(PDF)

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