We invite you to join us for three interesting and exciting workshops at this year’s NSS/MIC conference. There will be two workshops on Sunday 30 October 2016 and one on Friday 3 November 2016. One of the workshops on Sunday will be about instrumentation and measurement in nuclear environments, and is similar to the workshop that was held last year in San Diego. The other workshop on Sunday will be on detectors for ultra-rare event processes, which will include Dark Matter detectors, neutrino detectors (including neutrino-less double beta decay) and searches for other types of rare particles or decays, using noble liquid scintillators and associated photosensors. It will be geared towards the non-expert on these types of detectors and will serve as an introduction to the various types of techniques that are used in these experiments. The workshop on Friday will be related to this workshop, but will focus more on the technologies used in large area single photon detectors and their use for fast scintillator timing. It will also include participation from industrial partners who produce various types of photodetectors such as silicon photomultipliers. The Friday workshop will also be a follow up to the large area photon detection workshop held in Seattle in 2014. A detailed description of each of the workshops is listed below. We encourage everyone who is interested in these topics to attend any or all of the workshops and bring in new ideas for discussion. Anyone interested in submitting a contribution to one of the workshops should use the normal conference paper submission link. Please contact the organizers listed in the workshop descriptions if you have any questions or wish to inquire further about the workshops. The deadline for abstract submission is 3 June 2016.

Craig Woody
Workshops Chair
Brookhaven National Laboratory, USA

Organiser: Prof. Dr. Abdallah Lyoussi, CEA/DEN/CAD/DER, CEA Cadarache Research Center, France

Instrumentation and measurement methods in nuclear environments are key aspects that contribute to the quality of scientific and technological programs in the fields of physics, energy, nuclear fuel cycle, Safeguards and radioactive waste management. Furthermore, measurements relying on nuclear physics now play an important role in various fields of application such as biology, medicine and environment.

For the nuclear physics and technology side, nuclear experimental/research reactors are widely used around the world for various purposes, such as irradiation of material or fuel samples for present and future power reactors, safety studies, assessment of neutronic parameters (such as neutron absorption cross sections or reaction rates), production of artificial radio-elements, etc.

A sustainable nuclear energy requires research on fuel and material behaviour under irradiation with a high level of performance in order to meet following needs for the benefit of industry and public bodies:

  • A constant improvement of the performance and safety of present and future water cooled reactor technologies. Taking into account the lifetime extension and the progressive launch of generation III, nuclear power plants using water coolant will be in operation through the entire century. They will require a continuous R&D support following a long-term trend driven by the plant life management, safety demonstration, flexibility and economics improvement. Experimental irradiations of structure materials are necessary to anticipate these material behaviours and will contribute to the operation optimization.
  • Fuel technology in present and future nuclear power plants is continuously upgraded to achieve better performances and to optimize the fuel cycle, still keeping the best level of safety. Fuel evolution for generation II and III is and will stay a key stake requiring developments, qualification tests and safety experiments to ensure the competitiveness and safety: experimental tests exploring the full range of fuel behaviour determine fuel stability limits and safety margins, as a major input for the fuel reliability analysis.
  • To meet nuclear energy sustainable development objectives in the resources and waste management, generation IV reactors are mandatory and require innovative materials and fuels which resist to high temperatures and/or fast neutron flux in different environments. These environments will be needed for demonstrating the technical, economical and safety performances of these technologies.

To perform such accurate and innovative progress and developments, specific and ad hoc instrumentation, irradiation devices, measurement methods are necessary to be set up inside or beside the reactor core. These experiments require beforehand in situ and on line sophisticated measurements to accurately determine parameters such as thermal and fast neutron fluxes and nuclear heating in order to precisely monitor and control the conducted assays.

As entitled, this workshop deals with research, development and innovation in the frame of instrumentation and measurement dealing with nuclear experimental reactor such as ZPR (Zero Power Reactors), MTR (Material Testing Reactors), reactor demonstration prototypes for future nuclear power reactor / fission and fusion (GEN IV, ITER…) as well as nuclear power reactors and also nuclear fuel cycle, safeguards and homeland security and radioactive waste management. Workshop topics will concern instrumentation and measurement in the following areas:

  • MTR (JHR, ATR, BR2, OSIRIS…) and ZPR instrumentation and measurement programs.
  • Nuclear power reactors Research and Development program in the frame of instrumentation and measurements.
  • Future nuclear reactor programs GENIV (ASTRID, MYRRHA, ITER…) and their specificities and needs regarding instrumentation and measurement technics and tools.
  • Advanced research programs in the field of instrumentation and measurement developments dedicated to nuclear experimental reactor.
  • Innovative radiation detector developments/testing and qualification.
  • New/innovative/advanced data acquisition, treatment and analysis methodologies.
  • Neutron and photon measurement tools and techniques within experimental reactor(s).
  • Instrumentation, measurement, control for severe accident monitoring.
  • Instrumentation and measurement techniques and methodologies for nuclear material control and characterization (nuclear fuel, safeguards, non-proliferation, homeland security, radioactive waste…).

The workshop will be held on Sunday October 30th and will be divided in two parts. Part 1 will treat and discuss measurement and instrumentation performances, limitations, challenges and perspectives applied to nuclear research reactors as well as nuclear power reactors. Part 2 will be dedicated to nuclear fuel cycle measurements and instrumentation (fuel measurement, reprocessing process control and assay, radioactive waste management, spent fuel measurement and characterization, spent fuel & nuclear material control).

It is foreseen to have overview talks made by recognized experts in the field of nuclear measurement and instrumentation. We also encourage young researchers and scientists as well as PhD students to present and discuss their works and research studies. An important part of this workshop will be dedicated to discussion, exchange and interaction between the participants.

For more information on this workshop this workshop, please contact the organiser.

Organisers: Prof. Elena Aprile, Columbia University, USA - Prof. Luca Grandi, University of Chicago, USA

One of the frontiers of particle physics is the detection of ultra-rare processes, such as proton and neutrino-less double beta decays, Dark Matter and neutrino interactions. Only neutrino interactions have been detected so far, which has enabled a detailed characterization of their properties, leading to the 2015 Nobel Prize for the discovery of their flavor oscillations. More discoveries are likely, being enabled by the development of new detector technologies. Current developments are mostly in two directions: very low energy thresholds relying mostly on cryogenic solids and very large masses utilizing mostly liquids. In the latter case, interactions or decays are almost always detected using single photon detectors, sometimes coupled to ionization charge detection. Photomultiplier tubes have been traditionally used in these applications, but silicon photo-multipliers (SiPMs) are becoming competitive, especially when they can be operated at low temperatures (below 100 degrees C). SiPMs have several competitive advantages, in particular, their low background radioactivity, but they suffer from very large dark noise rates. In addition, their cost for very large quantities is not well known. Nevertheless, SiPMs are one of the technologies that may revolutionize ultra-rare event detection.

This workshop will serve as an introduction to the non-expert in the fields of Dark Matter detectors, neutrino detectors (including neutrino-less double beta decay) and searches for other types of rare particles or decays, using noble liquid scintillators and associated photosensors. It will consist of a series of introductory talks from experts from a number of experiments currently in operation to review the current status of their detectors, describe the challenges that they face in carrying out their physics program, discuss the problems and limitations with the current technologies that are being used and ways to improve them, and finally discuss future plans for the development and use of new technologies which could substantially improve the science reach.

This workshop will be held on Sunday 30 October 2016 and will serve in part as an introduction to another workshop on Friday 4 November on the Technology Frontier for Single Photon Detection and Fast Scintillator Timing. This second workshop will focus on the actual development of new photon detection technologies for these types of applications, as well as for other applications such as medical and biological imaging, and will include participation from industry partners involved in the development and production of new photodetectors for these purposes. We encourage participants interested in these techniques, and particularly those who feel that they can add new ideas and insights as to how these techniques could be improved, to attend both workshops, which should provide an opportunity for interacting and networking with experts from a variety of different fields.

For more information on this workshop this workshop, please contact the organisers.

Organisers: Dr. Fabrice Retiere, TRIUMF, Canada - Lorenzo Fabris, Oak Ridge National Lab, USA - Prof. Karl Ziemons, Aachen University, Germany - Dr. Etiennette Auffray, CERN, Switzerland - Dr. Jean-Marie Le Goff, CERN, Switzerland

Scintillator based detectors have been very successful in high energy physics (HEP) calorimetry, nuclear physics, medical imaging, and many other applications. Technologies for single photon detection are rapidly evolving, with silicon photomultipliers (SiPMs) replacing vacuum photomultiplier tubes in many applications. Yet, PMTs remain highly competitive for large area (>1cm2) applications, such as water Cerenkov detectors for neutrino physics, or noble gas liquid detectors for dark matter searches. Indeed, for large areas, SiPMs suffer from high capacitance per unit area that can pose challenges to the electronic design, and high dark noise rates, which can be alleviated by cooling, or ignored if the noise does not dominate the measurement (e.g. in air shower telescopes).The potential of such detectors to achieve precise timing is of increasing importance for many applications, and the implications of such a radical improvement may bring huge benefits in many areas.

HEP and nuclear physics will profit from a significant increase in detection efficiency and sensitivity, and the health sector from an unprecedented improvement in imaging quality and image reconstruction time. Such a ‘paradigm’ change, however, must go hand-in-hand with a similar breakthrough in the interdisciplinary domain of photon detection. Therefore, new expertise must be gained in the fields of scintillators and photodetectors, as well as electronic read out systems to develop single photon sensitivities over large areas and for ultrafast timing scintillator based detectors.

This workshop combines the activities of the FAST (Fast Advanced Scintillator Timing) workshop at the European Trans Domain COST Action TD1401 and the NSS Workshop on Large Area Photodetection, previously held in 2014 in Seattle. The overall focus of the workshop is on cutting edge technologies addressing the issues that currently limit the use of single photon detectors, including in particular large area readout issues, ultra fast timing better than 100 ps, radiation hardness, and Ultra-Violet and Vacuum Ultra-Violet sensitivity. The technologies that are of particular interest include analog SiPMs, SiPMs with embedded digital electronics (monolithic digital SiPMs, 3D-integration, etc.), as well as non-solid state based solutions such as Micro-Channel plates, hybrid photodetectors or gas-based solutions. Scintillation materials and readout electronics solutions will also be included as a part of the workshop scope.

This workshop aims at bringing together scholars, industry leaders and visionaries from across the world to discuss how academia and industry can partner to address these challenges. It represents a technical revolution with profound impact on feasible applications in particle physics, accelerator and nuclear physics, medical and biological imaging, non-destructive industrial processing and electronic design topics. An important objective of this workshop is also to provide training to young researchers in an open and innovative context. We need involvement from every facet of industry, government, academia and healthcare to harness the full potential of what is available and to define what is possible. Responsible and effective transformation will be ushered in through an alliance of industry and academia.

The workshop will be held on Friday, 4 November and will be preceded by another workshop on Sunday 30 October on detectors for ultra-rare event processes. The workshop on Sunday will serve as an introduction to non-experts in the field detectors for Dark Matter, neutrinos (including neutrino-less double beta decay) and other rare decays that utilize noble liquid scintillators and their associated photodetectors. It will focus more on detector techniques for these types of experiments, while the Friday workshop will focus more on technology developments and new applications. Participants are encouraged to participate in both workshops to discuss new ideas and insights and to interact with experts from areas outside their current fields of interest.

For more information on this workshop this workshop, please contact the organisers.