Detecting the presence of radioactive material is of critical importance due to the
on-going risk of armed conflict using nuclear weapons, terrorist trafficking of fissile
material for “dirty bombs” or radioactive detonation devices (RDDs), nuclear power
accidents, and exposure to nuclear waste. Trusted Semiconductor Solutions has addressed
this through our innovative solid-state thermal neutron sensor technology. Thermal
neutrons are often the only particles that can be detected from nuclear material
that is heavily shielded. Our neutron sensor and radiation detection products provide
real-time detection of neutrons emitted from fissile material at stand-off distances,
providing early warning of potential threats.
Wireless Sensor Networks
Our solid-state thermal neutron sensor supports miniature neutron detectors that
are ideal for clandestine monitoring of areas, buildings, vehicles, and people. Detectors
are wireless and operate autonomously with battery life of several months to several
years. These remote sensors can be placed in highly populated areas to detect the
presence of fissile material and can be wireless networked to provide a map of radiation.
Helium-3 Replacement Technology
Traditionally neutron detection has been performed using highly sensitive Helium-3
gas filled tubes. Helium-3 is a scarce resource and the supply has been depleted
to an extent that the US government is limiting future use. Radiation detectors that
precviously used Helium-3 tubes require alternative technology. We have developed
a small Helium-3 tube replacement module that has the same footprint, but uses our
solid-state neutron sensors. Mid-size and large Helium-3 tubes can also be replaced
with similar solid-state sensor modules.
Cargo, Ports and Border Monitoring
The ability to scan cargo, vehicles, and people entering the United States for the
presence nuclear material can be accomplished with radiation detectors on cargo containers,
radiation detection modules embedded into cargo handling equipment, drive-by detectors
at border crossings and handheld scanners. Detection is performed quickly and must
be free from false positives from naturally occurring radiation. Our detectors address
these operational scenarios and range from small hockey-puck-sized wireless detectors
attached to cargo containers to large detector panels installed at border crossings.
Detection of radiation exposure is captured through the use of dosimeters. Typically
dosimeters are used in medical applications to measure the exposure to X-ray or gamma-ray
radiation. Dosimeters that also measure accumulated exposure to neutrons are of interest
for those in close proximity to nuclear power facilities or military personnel and
troops. We are developing a reuseable neutron dosimeter badge that datalogs neutron
exposure. We also support integrated radiation dosimeters for detection of gamma,
x-ray and neutron exposure.