NEXT GENERATION SCALABLE SOLID STATE THERMAL NEUTRON DETECTOR

Period of Performance: 01/01/2015 - 12/31/2015

$150K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Solid State Detection Devices, LLC
8 Champagne Ct
Watervliet, NY 12189
Firm POC, Principal Investigator

Abstract

Solid State Detection Devices LLC proposes to develop a new commercially viable next generation thermal neutron detecting system based on well established silicon integrated circuit technology. Hexagonal holes in honeycomb fashion with depth greater than 50 microns and vertical side walls will be fabricated on bulk silicon wafers of right conductivity using a combination of deep reactive ion etching and wet chemical etching processes. The hexagonal deep holes in silicon will be converted to a continuous pn junction and then filled with enriched boron using low pressure chemical vapor deposition for converting neutrons into alpha particles and lithium ions that will be detected by silicon pn junction. The efficiency of these detectors will exceed 50 percent and the detectors will be thin and operate at zero bias and will be stable over a long term exceeding two years. These detectors will find application in portable systems and in larger area detection systems. In addition the availability of these new types of thin less than 500 microns efficient nonbiased neutron detectors will enable new applications in neutron detection. For example more compact coincidence counting systems may be possible and moderated geometries that embed these new detectors become feasible.