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Proceedings Paper

Elemental online coal analysis using pulsed neutrons
Author(s): Michael D. Belbot; George Vourvopoulos; Phillip C. Womble; Jonathon Paschal
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Paper Abstract

A neutron generator-based on-line coal analysis system has been developed, capable of measuring the major and minor chemical elements contained in coal. The system utilizes nuclear reactions produced from fast and thermal neutrons, as well as from neutron activation of isotopes with half- lives of seconds or minutes. Characteristic gamma rays detected with BGO (bismuth germanate) detectors are used for the identification of the various chemical elements. A key feature of the analyzer is its ability to analyze automatically three distinct gamma-ray spectra, and produce the elemental content of coal as it moves through a coal chute. A prototype analyzer has been built, able to analyze several tons/hour of coal. The main features of the analyzer are self-calibration independent of the coal seam, better accuracy in the determination of elements such as carbon, oxygen, and sodium, and diminished radiation risk.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 October 1999
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 3769, Penetrating Radiation Systems and Applications, (1 October 1999); doi: 10.1117/12.363679
Show Author Affiliations
Michael D. Belbot, Western Kentucky Univ. (United States)
George Vourvopoulos, Western Kentucky Univ. (United States)
Phillip C. Womble, Western Kentucky Univ. (United States)
Jonathon Paschal, Western Kentucky Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3769:
Penetrating Radiation Systems and Applications
F. Patrick Doty, Editor(s)

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