Progress toward the development and testing of source reconstruction methods for NIF neutron imaging.

Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico 87544, USA.
The Review of scientific instruments (Impact Factor: 1.52). 10/2010; 81(10):10D311. DOI: 10.1063/1.3492384
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Development of analysis techniques for neutron imaging at the National Ignition Facility is an important and difficult task for the detailed understanding of high-neutron yield inertial confinement fusion implosions. Once developed, these methods must provide accurate images of the hot and cold fuels so that information about the implosion, such as symmetry and areal density, can be extracted. One method under development involves the numerical inversion of the pinhole image using knowledge of neutron transport through the pinhole aperture from Monte Carlo simulations. In this article we present results of source reconstructions based on simulated images that test the methods effectiveness with regard to pinhole misalignment.

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    ABSTRACT: A neutron imaging diagnostic has recently been commissioned at the National Ignition Facility (NIF). This new system is an important diagnostic tool for inertial fusion studies at the NIF for measuring the size and shape of the burning DT plasma during the ignition stage of Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF) implosions. The imaging technique utilizes a pinhole neutron aperture, placed between the neutron source and a neutron detector. The detection system measures the two dimensional distribution of neutrons passing through the pinhole. This diagnostic has been designed to collect two images at two times. The long flight path for this diagnostic, 28 m, results in a chromatic separation of the neutrons, allowing the independently timed images to measure the source distribution for two neutron energies. Typically the first image measures the distribution of the 14 MeV neutrons and the second image of the 6-12 MeV neutrons. The combination of these two images has provided data on the size and shape of the burning plasma within the compressed capsule, as well as a measure of the quantity and spatial distribution of the cold fuel surrounding this core.
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    ABSTRACT: Numerical modeling of the neutron imaging system for the National Ignition Facility (NIF), forward from calculated target neutron emission to a camera image, will guide both the reduction of data and the future development of the system. Located 28 m from target chamber center, the system can produce two images at different neutron energies by gating on neutron arrival time. The brighter image, using neutrons near 14 MeV, reflects the size and symmetry of the implosion "hot spot." A second image in scattered neutrons, 10-12 MeV, reflects the size and symmetry of colder, denser fuel, but with only ∼1%-7% of the neutrons. A misalignment of the pinhole assembly up to ±175 μm is covered by a set of 37 subapertures with different pointings. The model includes the variability of the pinhole point spread function across the field of view. Omega experiments provided absolute calibration, scintillator spatial broadening, and the level of residual light in the down-scattered image from the primary neutrons. Application of the model to light decay measurements of EJ399, BC422, BCF99-55, Xylene, DPAC-30, and Liquid A suggests that DPAC-30 and Liquid A would be preferred over the BCF99-55 scintillator chosen for the first NIF system, if they could be fabricated into detectors with sufficient resolution.
    The Review of scientific instruments 10/2010; 81(10):10D335. · 1.52 Impact Factor