Responding to Crystal Defects
2014 R&D 100 Winner
Cadmium zinc telluride (CZT) gamma-ray detectors are important new components in spectroscopic imaging systems because they are the first detectors capable of distinguishing natural gamma-ray background and radioactive isotopes without the need for bulky cooling equipment. The technological difficulties of producing perfect crystals, however, have hindered widespread usage. Increasing the production yield of high-performance CZT detectors and lowering their cost are the most challenging goals facing developers today.
Brookhaven National Laboratory has successfully addressed this challenge with the introduction of the GammaScout, which achieves higher performance through better “as-grown” crystals and a new CZT gamma-ray detector design that can correct responses caused by crystal defects. The new detector design combines the high-resolution capability of cryogenically cooled semiconductors, such as high-purity germanium (HPGe), with the ambient-temperature operation capability of scintillators, like sodium iodide (NaI). The resulting detector minimizes the drawbacks of each of these materials, allowing engineers to build a system that is much lighter and less expensive than competing technologies.
|Brookhaven National Laboratory's GammaScout development team. Front row (l-r): Ralph James, Aleksey Bolotnikov, George Mahler. Back row (l-r): Yonggang Cui, Jack Fried, Ge Yang, Giuseppe Camarda, Utpal Roy, Emerson Vernon and Anwar Hossain.|
The GammaScout Development Team
Aleksey E. Bolotnikov, Principal Developer, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Ralph B. James, Principal Developer, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Giuseppe S. Camarda, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Yonggang Cui, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Gianluigi Degeronino, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Anwar Hossain, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Kisung Lee, Korea Univ.
Wonho Lee, Korea Univ.
George Mahler, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Utpal Roy, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Emerson Vernon, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Ge Yang, Brookhaven National Laboratory