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We report on a novel approach to produce oxygen-doped zinc telluride (ZnTe:O), a remarkable group II-VI semiconductor scintillator, fabricated in the columnar-structured or polycrystalline forms needed to fulfill the needs of many demanding X-ray and -ray imaging applications. ZnTe:O has one of the highest conversion efficiencies among known scintillators, emission around 680 nm (which is ideally suited for CCD sensors), high density of 6.4 g/cm3, fast decay time of ~1μs with negligible afterglow, and orders of magnitude higher radiation resistance compared to commonly used scintillators. These properties allow the use of ZnTe:O in numerous applications, including X-ray imaging, nuclear medicine (particularly SPECT), room temperature radioisotope identification, and homeland security. Additionally, ZnTe:O offers distinct advantages for synchrotron-based high resolution imaging due to the absence of atomic absorption edges in the low energy range, which otherwise reduce resolution due to secondary X-ray formations. We have fabricated films of ZnTe:O using a vapor deposition technique that allows large-area structured scintillator fabrication in a time- and cost-efficient manner, and evaluated its performance for small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) at an Argonne National Laboratory synchrotron beamline. Details of the fabrication and characterization of the optical, scintillation and imaging properties of the ZnTe:O films are presented in this paper.