Characterization of Neutron Detection Systems with Confidence via Statistical Parameter Correction
Published online: 20 January 2020
Neutron detection systems utilize statistical alarm techniques where a measured false alarm rate (FAR) can vary drastically from the FAR predicted by a theoretical model. The ability to set an alarm threshold that results in a practically controlled FAR is crucial to characterize detector sensitivity with both accuracy and precision. A generalized and automated method is presented to statistically evaluate FAR performance by assuming that the FAR itself is not deterministic, but a normal stochastic process over a specific parameter to be corrected that will hereafter be referred to as the correction. In this manner, a specific correction results in not only a point estimate of FAR, but also a confidence interval. The central objective is focused exclusively on characterization assuming that experiments are executed in a tightly controlled environment so that an accurate comparison is enabled across detectors. Once a correction is calculated, the estimated FAR is only assumed accurate in a similar environment for sensitivity evaluation. Initially, the calculated correction factor was used to compare FARs across various distributions including normal, corrected normal, Poisson, and a simplified normal distribution. Later verification data sets were used to empirically demonstrate the rate of containment of measured confidence coefficients using two detectors of different technology. A second application uses the correction method to improve the signal-to-noise ratio metric to agree more with dynamic sensitivity results. Finally, a third application studies the effect of altering the duration of background acquisition on FAR performance.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2020
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.