Spectroscopic neutron measurements: We perform neutron measurements using organic scintillation detectors to inform nuclear security, nuclear data and nuclear physics research. At present we work with several EJ-309 liquid organic scintillation detector and our expanding measurements with barium-fluoride and p-Terphenyl detectors. Machine learning methods are being studied to unfold neutron detector response from organic liquid scintillators. These reconstructed spectra can help inform nuclear security, nuclear physics, nuclear data, and health physics applications.
Anti-neutrino detection methods: Anti-neutrinos are evasive particles, however, if detected they can provide information about a reactor’s operational history such as the power of a reactor, the isotopics, its fuel cycle design. Our effort is to develop coherent neutrino-nucleus scatter based antineutrino detection (first measured in 2017) for nuclear safeguards and safety purposes. We have shown in our 2020 IEEE publication that germanium and silicon based detectors with ultra-low thresholds developed by the MINER group at Texas A&M can detect reactor antineutrinos much below the existing threshold of 1.806 MeV (with inverse beta-decay detectors).
Advanced Nuclear Fuel Safety and Security: We are studying advanced nuclear fuel based on TRISO particles to be used in very high temperature reactors. Our objective is to improve the operation of such automated fuel cycles with radiation measurements of burnup and used nuclear fuel of pebbles..
Quantum algorithms: We are exploring ways in which quantum computing can be used to simulate classical nuclear engineering and particle transport problems.