Monday, October 15, 2012

Imaging Damaged Reactors and Volcanoes

You probably recall our interest in imaging some parts of the Fukushima reactor through the robust deconvolution of the film taken by an endoscopic camera inserted in one of the non damaged reactor ? ( Webcam as a radiation sensor (Part3) , Part 2, Part 1.). For the reactors that have been damaged, it is going to take a little while before a camera is inserted anywhere. Cable mentioned to me this recent paper from arxiv where the good folks at Los Alamos are thinking about using muons to image the damaged cores. Their methods seems to go beyond a simple attenuation experiment like the imaging experiment of a Volcano in France as it also used the scattered particles to get a better image. I wonder if some coded aperture could improve some of that imaging (I realize this a low flux problem)

Cosmic Ray Radiography of the Damaged Cores of the  Fukushima Konstantin BorozdinSteven GreeneZarija Lukic, Edward Milner, Haruo MiyaderaChristopher Morris, and John Perry. The abstract reads:
Abstract The passage of muons through matter is dominated by the Coulomb interaction with electrons and nuclei. The interaction with the electrons leads to continuous energy loss and stopping of the muons. The interaction with nuclei leads to angle “diffusion”. Two muon-imaging methods that use flux  attenuation and multiple Coulomb scattering of cosmic-ray muons are being studied as tools for diagnosing the damaged cores of the Fukushima reactors. Here we compare these two methods. We conclude that the scattering method can provide detailed information about the core. Attenuation has low contrast and little sensitivity to the core.
There is additional detail and photos of test in this presentation entitled Non-Invasive Imaging of Reactor Cores Using Using Cosmic Ray Muons Cosmic Ray Muons by Cas Milner: Jeff Bacon, Konstantin Borozdin, Michael Brockwell, Steven GreeneHaruo MiyaderaChristopher Morris, John Perry

If the attenuation method is so bad, why aren't we using the scattering method for volcanoes ?

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