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Ceramic and structured neutron image plates based on KCl:Eu2+-LiF

Michael Schlapp 1,2Alexander Ioffe 2Sergey Masalovich 2Harald Conrad 2Thomas Brückel 2Hartmut Fuess 1Heinz Von Seggern 1

1. Technische Universität Darmstadt, Institute of Materials Science, Petersenstr. 23, Darmstadt 64287, Germany
2. Forschungszentrum Jülich, IFF, Streumethoden, Jülich 52425, Germany


Neutron image plates have found widespread application as neutron detectors for single-crystal and powder diffraction, small-angle scattering and tomography. After neutron exposure, the image plate can be read-out by scanning with a laser. Commercially available neutron image plates (NIPs) consist of a powder mixture of BaFBr:Eu2+ and Gd2O3 dispersed in a polymer matrix and supported by a flexible polymer sheet. Since BaFBr:Eu2+ also is an excellent X-ray storage phosphor, these NIPs are particularly prone to γ-radiation which is always present as a background radiation in neutron experiments. In this contribution we present results of NIPs consisting of KCl:Eu2+ and LiF which were fabricated into ceramic image plates hence eliminating the necessity for an organic binder phase. An advantage of this type of NIP is the significantly reduced γ-sensitivity. However, the much lower neutron absorption cross section of LiF compared to Gd2O3 demands a thicker image plate to obtain comparable neutron absorption. This increased thickness inevitably leads to a loss in spatial resolution of the NIP. However, the reduction in resolution can be restricted by a novel image plate concept in which a ceramic structure with square cells is embedded in the NIP resulting in a pixelated image plate (Pix-NIP). In such a NIP the read-out light is confined to the respectively illuminated pixel decoupling the spatial resolution from the optical properties of the image plate material and morphology. In this contribution, a comparison of experimentally determined and simulated spatial resolutions of pixelated and unstructured image plates for a fixed read-out laser intensity is presented as well as simulations on the properties of these NIPs at higher laser powers.


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Presentation: poster at E-MRS Fall Meeting 2004, Symposium D, by Michael Schlapp
See On-line Journal of E-MRS Fall Meeting 2004

Submitted: 2004-07-15 09:27
Revised:   2009-06-08 12:55