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Discovery and Crystal Growth of New Scintillators

Edith Bourret 

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), 1, Cyclotron Rd, Berkeley 94720, United States


Scintillator materials with better performance are in high demand for many applications: better resolution for medical imaging, better stopping power and resolution for national security. This is driving a large effort to discover new scintillating crystals and the establishment of a unique crystal growth laboratory at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The search has lead to the discovery of numerous new materials. A number of alkali-earth halides materials activated with Eu2+ are receiving much attention due to their high luminosity close to the theoretical limit and very good energy resolution. Other materials activated by Ce3+ and Tl+ have also been discovered and are now under development. In parallel, fundamental studies of scintillation are guiding the growth of known scintillators with improved performance. Large deployment of crystals in devices for national security adds an other challenge for the crystal growth community, as the improved scintillators must be produced at very low cost. We will present progress achieved in the synthesis, growth and performance of these new scintillators and highlight our approach to screen materials prior to their study as single crystals.


This work was supported in part by the U.S. Department of Energy/NNSA/NA22 and carried out at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory under Contract NO. AC02-05CH11231 and in part by the US Department of Homeland Security, Domestic Nuclear Detection Office, under competitively awarded contract/IAA HSHQDC-07-X-00170.  This support do not constitute an express or implied endorsement on the part of the Government.


1. E. D. Bourret-Courchesne et al, BaBrI:Eu2+, a new bright scintillator, Nucl. Instr. Meth. Phys. Res. A, 613, (2010), 95-97.

2. E. D. Bourret-Courchesne et al, Eu2+-doped Ba(2)Csl(5), a new high-performance scintillator, Nucl. Instr. Meth. Phys. Res. A, 612, (2009), 138-142.

3. Gregory Bizarri, Edith D. Bourret-Courchesne, Zewu Yan, and Steve E. Derenzo,Scintillation and Optical Properties of BaBrI and Cs2BaI5, IEEE Trans. Nuc. Sc., Vol.58, No6, December 2011, 3403.

4. Zewu Yan, Gregory Bizarri, Edith Bourret-Courchesne,”Scintillation properties of improved 5%Eu2+-doped BaCl2 single crystal for X-ray and gamma-ray detection” Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research A 698 (2013) 7-10.


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Presentation: Invited oral at 17th International Conference on Crystal Growth and Epitaxy - ICCGE-17, Topical Session 6, by Edith Bourret
See On-line Journal of 17th International Conference on Crystal Growth and Epitaxy - ICCGE-17

Submitted: 2013-04-26 22:56
Revised:   2013-07-18 13:06