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Instruments, Volume 7, Issue 1 (March 2023) – 13 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Particle therapy is well-established as a clinical tumor treatment method. Using ions offers superior depth dose distributions, but makes the delivery system more complex and requires highly accurate particle beam control. The monitoring system has to provide beam position and dose rate with small latency, while leaving the beam virtually undisturbed. Future developments such as MRI-guided ion beam therapy pose new challenges, such as tolerance towards magnetic fields and acoustic noise. Solid-state detectors based on HV-CMOS technology promise to fulfill these requirements and provide additional benefits for both medical treatment and beam diagnostics. A prototype of an HV-CMOS beam monitor has been developed and evaluated in a collaboration between KIT and HIT. View this paper
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36 pages, 4043 KiB  
Review
Cosmic-Ray Tomography for Border Security
by Sarah Barnes, Anzori Georgadze, Andrea Giammanco, Madis Kiisk, Vitaly A. Kudryavtsev, Maxime Lagrange and Olin Lyod Pinto
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010013 - 20 Mar 2023
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 6779
Abstract
A key task for customs workers is the interception of hazardous, illegal and counterfeit items in order to protect the health and safety of citizens. However, it is estimated that only a small fraction of cargo is inspected and an even smaller fraction [...] Read more.
A key task for customs workers is the interception of hazardous, illegal and counterfeit items in order to protect the health and safety of citizens. However, it is estimated that only a small fraction of cargo is inspected and an even smaller fraction of trafficked goods are detected. Today, the most widely used technology for scanning vehicles, ranging from vans and trucks to railcars, is γ ray and X-ray radiography. New technologies are required to overcome current technological shortcomings, such as the inability to detect the target material composition, the usage of harmful ionising radiation sources and the resultant low throughput. Cosmic ray tomography (CRT) is a promising technology for cargo screening. Cosmic ray muons have average energies of around 10,000 times larger than a typical X-ray and therefore can penetrate relatively large and dense materials. By analysing muon scattering, it is possible to identify materials hidden inside shielding that is too thick or deep for other imaging methods. CRT is also completely passive, exploiting naturally occurring secondary cosmic radiation, and is therefore safe for humans and animals. Contrary to conventional X-ray- or γ-ray-based imaging techniques, CRT also allows material differentiation and anomaly localisation within the cargo or vehicle through the provision of 3D images. This article reviews the current state-of-the-art technology in CRT, critically assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the method, and suggesting further directions for development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Muography, Applications in Cosmic-Ray Muon Imaging)
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9 pages, 3295 KiB  
Article
Upgrade of Thomson Scattering Diagnostic on HL-2A
by Wenping Guo, Yuan Huang, Chunhua Liu, Zhen Feng, Zhipei Hou, Wenyan Zhai, Hisamichi Funaba, Ichihiro Yamada, Yonggao Li and Zhongbin Shi
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010012 - 6 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1841
Abstract
The Thomson scattering diagnostic of the HL-2A tokamak device was upgraded to improve its multi-point diagnostic capability, including new collection optics, fibers bundles, and data analysis code. The small old collection lens was replaced by a six-piece lens with a Cooke optical design. [...] Read more.
The Thomson scattering diagnostic of the HL-2A tokamak device was upgraded to improve its multi-point diagnostic capability, including new collection optics, fibers bundles, and data analysis code. The small old collection lens was replaced by a six-piece lens with a Cooke optical design. The aperture of its first standard sphere face is 310.125 mm, which successfully increases the amount of collected scattering light by about three times. The new collection optic module allows for up to twenty-six spatial points. A kind of Y-type fiber bundle has also been used to ensure that the fiber end-face matches the image of the laser beam exactly. Additionally, the new data analysis code can provide preview results in seconds. Finally, the multi-point Te diagnostic ability has been significantly improved. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Instruments 2021–2022)
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10 pages, 7708 KiB  
Article
Commissioning Results of the New Compact ECR Ion Source for Electrostatic Storage Ring at KACST
by Suliman Alshammari, Abdullh Jabr, Saad Jaddua and Abdulhakim Alabadusalam
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010011 - 23 Feb 2023
Viewed by 2043
Abstract
A compact microwave ECR ion source with low operating power was tested and commissioned for the ion injector line in the multipurpose low-energy ELASR storage ring facility at King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) in Riyadh. The compact ECR ion source [...] Read more.
A compact microwave ECR ion source with low operating power was tested and commissioned for the ion injector line in the multipurpose low-energy ELASR storage ring facility at King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) in Riyadh. The compact ECR ion source can deliver singly charged ions with an energy of up to 50 keV and a beam current of up to 50 μA or up to 500 µA with a larger extraction aperture. The plasma in the ECR chamber is driven by a simple transmitter antenna, making the overall size of the ion source only 6 cm in diameter, which is relatively small when compared with other ECR systems. Additionally, the source operates without a high-voltage platform, which significantly reduces the overall footprint and simplifies the system operation. In this paper, the mechanical design and modeling of the ECR ion source are introduced, and the layout of the first part of the beam line is presented along with the numerical simulation results. In addition, the experimental results obtained for the first generated ion beam and commissioning of the ECR ion source are introduced and discussed. Full article
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12 pages, 3161 KiB  
Article
RF Design and Measurements of a C-Band Prototype Structure for an Ultra-High Dose-Rate Medical Linac
by Lucia Giuliano, Fabio Bosco, Martina Carillo, Giuseppe Felici, Luca Ficcadenti, Andrea Mostacci, Mauro Migliorati, Luigi Palumbo, Bruno Spataro and Luigi Faillace
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010010 - 22 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1819
Abstract
In this paper, we illustrate the RF design and measurements of a C-band prototype structure for an Ultra High Dose Rate medical linac. (1) Background: FLASH Radiotherapy (RT) is a revolutionary new technique for cancer cure. It releases ultra-high radiation dose rates (above [...] Read more.
In this paper, we illustrate the RF design and measurements of a C-band prototype structure for an Ultra High Dose Rate medical linac. (1) Background: FLASH Radiotherapy (RT) is a revolutionary new technique for cancer cure. It releases ultra-high radiation dose rates (above 100 Gy/s) in microsecond short pulses. In order to obtain a high dose in a very short time, accelerators with high-intensity currents (the order of 100 mA peak currents) have to be developed. In this contest, Sapienza University, in collaboration with SIT-Sordina IORT Technology spa, is developing a new C-band linac to achieve the FLASH regime. (2) Methods: We performed the RF electromagnetic design of the prototype of the C band linac using CST STUDIO Suite Code and the RF low power RF test at Sapienza University of Rome. The measurements of the field in the cavity have been done with the bead-pull technique. (3) Results: This device is a nine-cell structure operating on the π/2 mode at 5.712 GHz (C-band). We report and discuss the test measurement results on a full-scale copper prototype, showing good agreement with CST RF simulations. A tuning procedure has been implemented in order to ensure proper operating frequency and to reach a field profile flatness of the order of a few percent. (4) Conclusions: The prototype of a C-band linac for FLASH applications was successfully tested with low RF power at Sapienza University. The fabrication and ad hoc tuning procedures have been optimized and discussed in the paper. Full article
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25 pages, 8188 KiB  
Article
A Beam Monitor for Ion Beam Therapy Based on HV-CMOS Pixel Detectors
by Alexander Dierlamm, Matthias Balzer, Felix Ehrler, Ulrich Husemann, Roland Koppenhöfer, Ivan Perić, Martin Pittermann, Bogdan Topko, Alena Weber, Stephan Brons, Jürgen Debus, Nicole Grau, Thomas Hansmann, Oliver Jäkel, Sebastian Klüter and Jakob Naumann
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010009 - 9 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2629
Abstract
Particle therapy is a well established clinical treatment of tumors. More than one hundred particle therapy centers are in operation world-wide. The advantage of using hadrons like protons or carbon ions as particles for tumor irradiation is the distinct peak in the depth-dependent [...] Read more.
Particle therapy is a well established clinical treatment of tumors. More than one hundred particle therapy centers are in operation world-wide. The advantage of using hadrons like protons or carbon ions as particles for tumor irradiation is the distinct peak in the depth-dependent energy deposition, which can be exploited to accurately deposit doses in the tumor cells. To guarantee this, high accuracy in monitoring and control of the particle beam is of the utmost importance. Before the particle beam enters the patient, it traverses a monitoring system which has to give fast feedback to the beam control system on position and dose rate of the beam while minimally interacting with the beam. The multi-wire chambers mostly used as beam position monitors have their limitations when a fast response time is required (drift time). Future developments such as MRI-guided ion beam therapy pose additional challenges for the beam monitoring system, such as tolerance of magnetic fields and acoustic noise (vibrations). Solid-state detectors promise to overcome these limitations and the higher resolution they offer can create additional benefits. This article presents the evaluation of an HV-CMOS detector for beam monitoring, provides results from feasibility studies in a therapeutic beam, and summarizes the concepts towards the final large-scale assembly and readout system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Medical Applications of Particle Physics)
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16 pages, 2361 KiB  
Article
A Non-Inductive Magnetic Eye-Tracker: From Dipole Tracking to Gaze Retrieval
by Valerio Biancalana and Piero Chessa
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010008 - 7 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1805
Abstract
We analyze the information that can be retrieved from the tracking parameters produced by an innovative wearable eye tracker. The latter is based on a permanent-magnet marked corneal lens and by an array of magnetoresistive detectors that measure the magnetostatic field in several [...] Read more.
We analyze the information that can be retrieved from the tracking parameters produced by an innovative wearable eye tracker. The latter is based on a permanent-magnet marked corneal lens and by an array of magnetoresistive detectors that measure the magnetostatic field in several positions in the eye proximity. We demonstrate that, despite missing information due to the axial symmetry of the measured field, physiological constraints or measurement conditions make possible to infer complete eye-pose data. Angular precision and accuracy achieved with the current prototypical device are also assessed and briefly discussed. The results show that the instrumentation considered is suitable as a new, moderately invasive medical diagnostics for the characterization of ocular movements and associated disorders. Full article
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13 pages, 1895 KiB  
Article
Characterization and On-Field Performance of the MuTe Silicon Photomultipliers
by Jesús Peña-Rodríguez, Juan Sánchez-Villafrades, Hernán Asorey and Luis A. Núñez
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010007 - 22 Jan 2023
Viewed by 1442
Abstract
The Muon Telescope, MuTe, is an instrument for imaging volcanoes in Colombia. It consists of a scintillator tracking system and a water Cherenkov detector for particle energy measurement. The Muon Telescope operates autonomously in high-altitude environments where the temperature gradient reaches up to [...] Read more.
The Muon Telescope, MuTe, is an instrument for imaging volcanoes in Colombia. It consists of a scintillator tracking system and a water Cherenkov detector for particle energy measurement. The Muon Telescope operates autonomously in high-altitude environments where the temperature gradient reaches up to 10 °C. In this work, we characterize the telescope silicon photomultipliers’ breakdown voltage, gain, and noise for temperature variations spanning 0 to 40 °C. We demonstrate that the discrimination threshold for the Muon Telescope hodoscope must be above 5 photo-electrons to avoid contamination due to dark count, crosstalk, and afterpulsing. We also assess the detector counting rate depending on day-night temperature variations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Muography, Applications in Cosmic-Ray Muon Imaging)
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2 pages, 165 KiB  
Editorial
Acknowledgment to the Reviewers of Instruments in 2022
by Instruments Editorial Office
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010006 - 18 Jan 2023
Viewed by 905
Abstract
High-quality academic publishing is built on rigorous peer review [...] Full article
12 pages, 6901 KiB  
Article
A Cross-Line Structured Light Scanning System Based on a Measuring Arm
by Dayong Tai, Zhixiong Wu, Ying Yang and Cunwei Lu
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010005 - 3 Jan 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1647
Abstract
The measurement system proposed in this paper, using a measuring arm and line structured light, has a wide range of applications. To improve the scanning efficiency, the system outlined in this paper uses two single-line structured lights to form crosshair structured light, which [...] Read more.
The measurement system proposed in this paper, using a measuring arm and line structured light, has a wide range of applications. To improve the scanning efficiency, the system outlined in this paper uses two single-line structured lights to form crosshair structured light, which we combine with a measuring arm to form a comprehensive scanning measurement system. The calibration method of Zhengyou Zhang and a calibration board are used to complete parameter calibration of the sensors and cameras, as well as hand–eye calibration of the measuring arm. For complex curved-surface objects, this system extracts the cross-line structured light optical center location, which suffers from ambiguity. Therefore, we introduce the use of periodic control of the two line structured light sources in order to resolve the light extraction polysemy. Our experimental results indicate that the proposed system can effectively satisfy the function of crosshair structured light scanning of large, complex surfaces. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photonic Devices Instrumentation and Applications II)
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15 pages, 3907 KiB  
Article
Angle-Resolved Time-of-Flight Electron Spectrometer Designed for Femtosecond Laser-Assisted Electron Scattering and Diffraction
by Motoki Ishikawa, Kakuta Ishida, Reika Kanya and Kaoru Yamanouchi
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010004 - 3 Jan 2023
Viewed by 1788
Abstract
We developed an apparatus for measuring kinetic energy and two-dimensional angular distributions of femtosecond laser-assisted electron scattering (LAES) signals with a high detection efficiency, consisting of a photocathode-type ultrashort pulsed electron gun, a gas injection nozzle, an angle-resolved time-of-flight analyzer, and a time-and-position [...] Read more.
We developed an apparatus for measuring kinetic energy and two-dimensional angular distributions of femtosecond laser-assisted electron scattering (LAES) signals with a high detection efficiency, consisting of a photocathode-type ultrashort pulsed electron gun, a gas injection nozzle, an angle-resolved time-of-flight analyzer, and a time-and-position sensitive electron detector. We also established an analysis method for obtaining the kinetic energy and two-dimensional angular distributions of scattered electrons from raw data of their flight times and the detected positions at the detector recorded using the newly developed apparatus. From the measurement of the LAES processes of Ar atoms in a femtosecond near-infrared intense laser field, we obtained a two-dimensional angular distribution image of the LAES signals and showed that the detection efficiency of the LAES signals was raised by a factor of 40 compared with that achieved before in 2010. Full article
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11 pages, 8763 KiB  
Article
A Burn-in Test Station for the ATLAS Phase-II Tile-Calorimeter Low-Voltage Power Supply Transformer-Coupled Buck Converters
by Ryan Peter Mckenzie
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010003 - 29 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2035
Abstract
The upgrade of the ATLAS hadronic tile-calorimeter (TileCal) Low-Voltage Power Supply (LVPS) falls under the high-luminosity LHC upgrade project. This article serves to provide an overview of the development of a burn-in test station for a Phase-II upgrade LVPS component known as a [...] Read more.
The upgrade of the ATLAS hadronic tile-calorimeter (TileCal) Low-Voltage Power Supply (LVPS) falls under the high-luminosity LHC upgrade project. This article serves to provide an overview of the development of a burn-in test station for a Phase-II upgrade LVPS component known as a Brick. These Bricks are radiation hard transformer-coupled buck converters that function to step-down bulk 200 V DC power to the 10 V DC power required by the on-detector electronics. To ensure the high reliability of the Bricks, once installed within the TileCal, a burn-in test station has been designed and built. The Burn-in procedure subjects the Bricks to sub-optimal operating conditions that function to accelerate their aging as well as to stimulate failure mechanisms. This results in elements of the Brick that would fail prematurely within the TileCal failing within the burn-in station or to experience performance degradation that can be detected by followup testing effectively screening out the ’weak’ sub-population. The burn-in station is of a fully custom design in both its hardware and software. The development of the test station will be explored and the preliminary burn-in procedure to be employed will be presented. The commissioning of the burn-in station will be presented along with a summary and outlook of the project. Full article
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10 pages, 8305 KiB  
Article
Muon Radiography Investigations in Boreholes with a Newly Designed Cylindrical Detector
by Mariaelena D’Errico, Fabio Ambrosino, Luigi Cimmino, Vincenzo Masone, Marco Mirra, Giulio Saracino and Lorenzo Roscilli
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010002 - 27 Dec 2022
Viewed by 1734
Abstract
Muons are constantly produced in cosmic-rays and reach the Earth surface with a flux of about 160 particles per second per square meter. The abundance of muons with respect to other cosmic particles and their capability to cross dense materials with low absorption [...] Read more.
Muons are constantly produced in cosmic-rays and reach the Earth surface with a flux of about 160 particles per second per square meter. The abundance of muons with respect to other cosmic particles and their capability to cross dense materials with low absorption rate allow them to be exploited for large scale geological or human-made object imaging. Muon radiography is based on similar principles as X-ray radiography, measuring the surviving rate of muons escaping the target and relating it to the mass distribution inside the object. In the course of decades, after the first application in 1955, the methodology has been applied in several different fields. Muography allows us to measure the internal density distribution of the investigated object, or to simply highlight the presence of void regions by observing any excess of muons. Most of these applications require the detector to be installed below the rock being probed. In case that possible installation sites are not easily accessible by people, common instrumentation cannot be installed. A novel borehole cylindrical detector for muon radiography has been recently developed to deal with these conditions. It has been realized with a cylindrical geometry to fit typical borehole dimensions. Its design maximizes the geometrical acceptance, minimizing the dead spaces by the use of arc-shaped scintillators. The details of the construction and preliminary results of the first usage are described in this paper. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Muography, Applications in Cosmic-Ray Muon Imaging)
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15 pages, 10468 KiB  
Article
6LiF Converters for Neutron Detection: Production Procedures and Detector Tests
by Antonio Massara, Simone Amaducci, Luigi Cosentino, Fabio Longhitano, Carmelo Marchetta, Gaetano Elio Poma, Martina Ursino and Paolo Finocchiaro
Instruments 2023, 7(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/instruments7010001 - 23 Dec 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1862
Abstract
Several methods to detect thermal neutrons make use of the naturally occurring 6Li isotope, as it has a rather high cross-section for neutron capture followed by a decay into an alpha particle and a triton. Due to the high chemical reactivity of [...] Read more.
Several methods to detect thermal neutrons make use of the naturally occurring 6Li isotope, as it has a rather high cross-section for neutron capture followed by a decay into an alpha particle and a triton. Due to the high chemical reactivity of lithium, the use of the stable isotopic salt 6LiF is generally preferred to the pure 6Li. The typical method for depositing thin layers of 6LiF on suitable substrates, therefore creating so-called neutron converters, is evaporation under vacuum. The evaporation technique, as well as a newly developed chemical deposition process, are described along with their benefits and drawbacks, and the results of neutron detection tests performed with the two types of converters coupled to silicon diodes show convenient performances. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Instruments 2021–2022)
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