Comparison between Silicon-Carbide and diamond for fast neutron detection at room temperature
Université Aix-Marseille, Marseille 13397, France
firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute of Neutron Physics and Reactor Technology, Karlsruhe 76344, Germany Axel.Klix@kit.edu.
Technical university of Dresden Toralf.Doering@mailbox.tu-dresden.de
Laboratoire Dosimétrie Capteurs Instrumentation, CEA, Cadarache 13108, France Abdallah.Lyoussi@cea.fr.
Published online: 10 January 2018
Neutron radiation detector for nuclear reactor applications plays an important role in getting information about the actual neutron yield and reactor environment. Such detector must be able to operate at high temperature (up to 600° C) and high neutron flux levels. It is worth nothing that a detector for industrial environment applications must have fast and stable response over considerable long period of use as well as high energy resolution. Silicon Carbide is one of the most attractive materials for neutron detection. Thanks to its outstanding properties, such as high displacement threshold energy (20-35 eV), wide band gap energy (3.27 eV) and high thermal conductivity (4.9 W/cm·K), SiC can operate in harsh environment (high temperature, high pressure and high radiation level) without additional cooling system. Our previous analyses reveal that SiC detectors, under irradiation and at elevated temperature, respond to neutrons showing consistent counting rates as function of external reverse bias voltages and radiation intensity. The counting-rate of the thermal neutron-induced peak increases with the area of the detector, and appears to be linear with respect to the reactor power. Diamond is another semi-conductor considered as one of most promising materials for radiation detection. Diamond possesses several advantages in comparison to other semiconductors such as a wider band gap (5.5 eV), higher threshold displacement energy (40-50 eV) and thermal conductivity (22 W/cm·K), which leads to low leakage current values and make it more radiation resistant that its competitors. A comparison is proposed between these two semiconductors for the ability and efficiency to detect fast neutrons. For this purpose the deuterium-tritium neutron generator of Technical University of Dresden with 14 MeV neutron output of 1010 n·s-1 is used. In the present work, we interpret the first measurements and results with both 4H-SiC and chemical vapor deposition (CVD) diamond detectors irradiated with 14 MeV neutrons at room temperature.
Key words: 4H-SiC / neutron detector / SiC neutron detector / Diamond neutron detector / fast neutron detection
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2018
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).