General Research Area

GENTLE Student Research Experiences (SRE) applications will be accepted until August 31st, 2016. SREs will have to be completed by December 31st, 2016, with no exceptions.


EC Joint Research Centre Geel

(Geel, Belgium)

Characterization of detectors in gamma-ray and neutron fields

Neutron and gamma-ray detectors are used for various applications, such as nuclear safeguards and security or cross section measurements. Before the detectors can be used they need to be characterized for e.g. the optimum operating conditions, detection efficiency and sensitivity for background radiation. Some applications even require the full response function of the detector.

Such a characterization can be carried out at the experimental facilities of the Standards for Nuclear Safety, Security and Safeguards (SN3S) unit of the JRC Geel. These facilities include the time-of-flight facility GELINA and a 7 MV Van de Graaff accelerator. In addition various well characterized neutron and gamma-ray radionuclide sources are available.

Keywords: gamma, neutron, detector, characterization, safeguards, security

Willy Mondelears, JRC Geel,

Peter Schillebeeckx, JRC Geel,

Jan Heyse, JRC Geel,

Time-of-flight cross section measurements

Interaction of neutrons with matter is of great importance when evaluating the safety and risks related to the operation of nuclear power plants, nuclear waste management, or new concepts of nuclear power production. Smaller uncertainties in the neutron cross section data can result in enhanced safety of present and future plants.

JRC Geel measures neutron cross-sections of relevant nuclei to improve the existing files. Therefore, the Standards for Nuclear Safety, Security and Safeguards (SN3S) unit of the JRC Geel operates the neutron time-of-flight facility GELINA. This facility has been designed to study cross sections of neutron induced reactions in the resonance region. It is a multi-user facility where measurements can be performed at 12 different flight paths in parallel. The measurement stations are equipped to perform total and reaction cross section measurements.

Keywords: neutron, cross section, resonance, time-of-flight, GELINA, measurement, safety

Willy Mondelears, JRC Geel,

Peter Schillebeeckx, JRC Geel,

Jan Heyse, JRC Geel,


EC Joint Research Centre Karlsruhe

(Karlsruhe, Germany)

Vibrational Spectroscopy of Nuclear Materials

Raman and Infrared spectroscopy constitute powerful and complementary tools for the investigation of material properties at the molecular scale. Raman spectroscopy is a particularly advantageous technique thanks to its remote, non-destructive and local character. Such features, combined with a minimal sample preparation, are particularly attractive when deal with toxic and radioactive materials. Although vibrational spectroscopy studies of some thorium and uranium compounds exist in the open scientific literature, data relative to most actinide-containing materials are still very rare.

Keywords: Actinide compounds, Vibrational Spectroscopy, Raman activity.

Contact People / Supervisors:

Rudy Konings, JRC

Dario Manara, JRC

Ondrej Benes, JRC

Jean-Yves Colle, JRC