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Probe for contamination detection in recyclable materials

United States Patent

August 5, 2003
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Oak Ridge National Laboratory - Visit the Partnerships Directorate Website
A neutron detection system for detection of contaminants contained within a bulk material during recycling includes at least one neutron generator for neutron bombardment of the bulk material, and at least one gamma ray detector for detection of gamma rays emitted by contaminants within the bulk material. A structure for analyzing gamma ray data is communicably connected to the gamma ray detector, the structure for analyzing gamma ray data adapted. The identity and concentration of contaminants in a bulk material can also be determined. By scanning the neutron beam, discrete locations within the bulk material having contaminants can be identified. A method for recycling bulk material having unknown levels of contaminants includes the steps of providing at least one neutron generator, at least one gamma ray detector, and structure for analyzing gamma ray data, irradiating the bulk material with neutrons, and then determining the presence of at least one contaminant in the bulk material from gamma rays emitted from the bulk material.
Taleyarkhan; Rusi (Knoxville, TN)
UT-Battelle, LLC (Oak Ridge, TN)
09/ 864,693
May 24, 2001
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC05-00OR22725 between the United States Department of Energy and UT-Battelle, LLC.