A thermal radiation shield for cooled portable gamma-ray spectrometers. The thermal radiation shield is located intermediate the vacuum enclosure and detector enclosure, is actively driven, and is useful in reducing the heat load to mechanical cooler and additionally extends the lifetime of the mechanical cooler. The thermal shield is electrically-powered and is particularly useful for portable solid-state gamma-ray detectors or spectrometers that dramatically reduces the cooling power requirements. For example, the operating shield at 260K (40K below room temperature) will decrease the thermal radiation load to the detector by 50%, which makes possible portable battery operation for a mechanically cooled Ge spectrometer.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.