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Scintillator Non-Proportionality: Present Understanding and Future Challenges

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5 Author(s)
Moses, W.W. ; Lawrence Berkeley Nat. Lab., Berkeley, CA ; Payne, S.A. ; Choong, W.-S. ; Hull, G.
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Scintillator non-proportionality (the fact that the conversion factor between the energy deposited in a scintillator and the number of visible photons produced is not constant) has been studied both experimentally and theoretically for ~50 years. Early research centered on the dependence of the conversion factor on the species of the ionizing radiation (gamma, alpha, beta, proton, etc.), and researchers during the 1960s discovered a strong correlation between the scintillation efficiency and the ionization density. In more recent years, non-proportionality has been proposed as the reason why the energy resolution of most scintillators is worse than that predicted by counting statistics. While much progress has been made, there are still major gaps in our understanding of both the fundamental causes of non-proportionality and their quantitative link to scintillator energy resolution. This paper summarizes the present state of knowledge on the nature of the light-yield non-proportionality and its effect on energy resolution.

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Nuclear Science, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:55 ,  Issue: 3 )