Neutron shadow holography: a feasibility study Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/cc08hj382

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  • Neutron shadow holography is a method of obtaining a three-dimensional neutron radiograph of an object using a Fresnel zone plate as an encoding aperture. The object is reconstructed by passing laser light through a miniature copy of the radiograph. The technique has been applied extensively with X-rays and gamma rays but only recently with neutrons. This project is only the second known of its kind in the United States. The requirements for this type of work include the availability of an intense thermal neutron beam such as that produced by a nuclear research reactor, high resolution photo-reduction capability of up to 40 to 1, and high quality optics and laser equipment. In addition, the capability must exist to properly construct a zone plate encoding aperture. This project utilized all of the above facilities, equipment, and capabilities available at Oregon State University to successfully demonstrate the feasibility of performing neutron shadow holography experiments. An historical review is given of developments leading to the present state-of-art neutron holography technique. The physical properties and limitations of the classical Fresnel zone plate are extensively reviewed as they apply to shadow holography. The effect of the neutronic self-shielding properties of target objects on object resolution is discussed and shown to be generally the most limiting. Finally, contributions to the current literature on this subject are made in two areas. First, an improved zone plate construction method was successfully demonstrated which should substantially improve object reproducibility. Second, an analysis of the neutron energy spectrum effect on hologram quality is reported for the first time and shown to be substantial. Further refinement of the shadow holography technique at Oregon State University is necessary to achieve the level of success enjoyed by other researchers. This project has shown that such refinement is well within the capability of existing facilities and equipment.
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