A tube-style neutron detector, a panel-style neutron detector incorporating a plurality of tube-style neutron detectors, and a panel-style neutron detector including a plurality of anode wires are provided. A plurality of channels is provided in a neutron detector such that each channel has an inner surface of a coating layer including a neutron-absorbing material. A wire anode is provided at end of each channel so that electrons generated by a charged daughter particle generated by a neutron are collected to detect a neutron-matter interaction. Moderator units can be incorporated into a neutron detector to provide improved detection efficiencies and/or to determine neutron energy spectrum. Gas-based proportional response from the neutron detectors can be employed for special nuclear material (SNM) detection. This neutron detector can provide similar performance to .sup.3He-based detectors without requiring .sup.3He and without containing toxic, flammable, or high-pressure materials.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
This invention was made with government support under Contract No. DE-AC05-00OR22725 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in this invention.