Compact Microtron Source of Gamma Rays and Neutrons

There is a growing need for compact accelerators that produce gamma rays and neutrons for several applications, such as gamma-ray radiography, detection of nuclear materials and explosives hidden in vehicles and cargo containers and for medical and industrial applications.

A microtron is an efficient electron accelerator that can be used as a copious source of gamma rays and neutrons. The electron beam is held inside the microtron in circular orbits by a uniform magnetic field. The beam can be extracted passively from the microtron by shielding the beam from the field with a soft steel tube placed inside the microtron.

We have studied several classical microtron designs, and have adapted a version best suited for an industrial prototype. The evaluations included computations and simulations to compare RF frequency bands, beam energies and power, gamma and neutron production, magnet types and designs, accelerator cavity designs, electron source designs, vacuum system designs, and beam extraction designs. We will design and prototype for particular applications.