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Simultaneous, robot-compatible γ-ray spectroscopy and imaging of an operating nuclear reactor

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

E-pub ahead of print
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>11/11/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>IEEE Sensors Journal
Publication StatusE-pub ahead of print
Early online date11/11/20
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The design and test of a robot-compatible, radiation detection instrument providing simultaneous γ-ray imaging and γ-ray spectroscopy is described. The sensing system comprises a cerium bromide inorganic scintillation detector and a cylindrical, lead slot collimator that is configured with a robot-compatible, on-board data acquisition system. The mount for the sensor is a lightweight, bespoke 3-axis gimbal actuated by servos for pan, tilt and rotation of the collimator for imaging capability. This paper discusses the integration of this relatively low-cost radiation detection apparatus with a commercially available, Robot-Operating-System-controlled robotic platform (a Clearpath Robotics™ Jackal). The detection system is compliant with the power and mass payload constraints of the robot. Its performance has been evaluated by means of two practical examples: a) measurements in a laboratory environment to assess the ability of the system to resolve two caesium-137 point sources, and b) deployment at the Jožef Stefan Institute TRIGA Mark II research reactor to assess the ability of the system to characterise the γ-ray emission at 1 kW from a horizontal tangential beam port in the reactor hall and from the reactor sample pool above the core.