The mu TPC method: improving the position resolution of neutron detectors based on MPGDs

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Due to the He-3 crisis, alternatives to the standard neutron detection techniques are becoming urgent. In addition, the instruments of the European Spallation Source (ESS) require advances in the state of the art of neutron detection. The instruments need detectors with excellent neutron detection efficiency, high rate capabilities and unprecedented spatial resolution. The Macromolecular Crystallography instrument (NMX) requires a position resolution in the order of 200 mu m over a wide angular range of incoming neutrons. Solid converters in combination with Micro Pattern Gaseous Detectors (MPGDs) are proposed to meet the new requirements. Charged particles rising from the neutron capture have usually ranges larger than several millimetres in gas. This is apparently in contrast with the requirements for the position resolution. In this paper, we present an analysis technique, new in the field of neutron detection, based on the Time Projection Chamber (TPC) concept. Using a standard Single-GEM with the cathode coated with (B4C)-B-10, we extract the neutron interaction point with a resolution of better than sigma = 200 mu m.


  • Dorothea Pfeiffer
  • F. Resnati
  • J. Birch
  • Richard Hall-Wilton
  • Carina Höglund
  • L. Hultman
  • G. Iakovidis
  • E. Oliveri
  • Esko Oksanen
  • L. Ropelewski
  • P. Thuiner
External organisations
  • Mid Sweden University
  • Linköping University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Physical Sciences


  • THGEM, GEM, Micropattern gaseous detectors (MSGC, Particle tracking detectors, Time projection Chambers (TPC), RETHGEM, MHSP, MICROPIC, MICROMEGAS, InGrid, etc), Neutron detectors (cold, thermal, fast neutrons)
Original languageEnglish
Article numberP04004
JournalJournal of Instrumentation
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Publication categoryResearch