Nondestructive examination of uranium oxide kernels using energy-resolved neutron imaging

December 21, 2019

Kristian G. Myhre (1), Yuxuan Zhang (1), Hassina Z. Bilheux (1), Jared A. Johnson (1), Jean-Christophe Bilheux (1), Andrew J. Miskowiec (1), Rodney D. Hunt (1)
Oak Ridge National Laboratory archives


Neutron radiography is one approach to nondestructively characterizing a wide range of sample types, including nuclear fuel materials. Tomographic data can be obtained when radiographs are collected at multiple rotation angles. Traditional neutron radiography can offer a wealth ofstructural information including porosity, defects, and shape information. A relatively new suite of neutron radiography modalities makes use of energy-resolved data, which is typically obtained using a time-gated detector and pulsed neutron source. This type of neutron imaging is called Energy-Resolved Neutron Imaging (ERNI). One form of ERNI makes use of neutrons from roughly 1 eV to 1000 eV (epithermal) to obtain spectral data in the neutron resonance region. This technique is called Neutron Energy Resonance Imaging (NERI) and provides isotopic composition information. Numerous isotopes, including those of uranium and gadolinium, have large resonance cross sections in the epithermal neutron energy region. NERI can then be used to map individual uranium, gadolinium, and other elements through a sample.

How Our Software Was Used

Dragonfly was used to produce 3D visualizations of radiographic datasets.

Author Affiliation

(1) Oak Ridge National Laboratory, P.O. Box 2008, Oak Ridge, TN, 37831 USA.