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Coded aperture imaging
Alpha source imaging
Automated scanning
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Talebitaher, A., Shutler, P. M., Springham, S. V., Rawat, R. S., & Lee, P. (2012). Coded aperture imaging of alpha source spatial distribution. Radiation Measurements, 47(10), 992-999.
The Coded Aperture Imaging (CAI) technique has been applied with CR-39 nuclear track detectors to image alpha particle source spatial distributions. The experimental setup comprised: a 226Ra source of alpha particles, a laser-machined CAI mask, and CR-39 detectors, arranged inside a vacuum enclosure. Three different alpha particle source shapes were synthesized by using a linear translator to move the 226Ra source within the vacuum enclosure. The coded mask pattern used is based on a Singer Cyclic Difference Set, with 400 pixels and 57 open square holes (representing ρ = 1/7 = 14.3% open fraction). After etching of the CR-39 detectors, the area, circularity, mean optical density and positions of all candidate tracks were measured by an automated scanning system. Appropriate criteria were used to select alpha particle tracks, and a decoding algorithm applied to the (x, y) data produced the de-coded image of the source. Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) values obtained for alpha particle CAI images were found to be substantially better than those for corresponding pinhole images, although the CAI-SNR values were below the predictions of theoretical formulae. Monte Carlo simulations of CAI and pinhole imaging were performed in order to validate the theoretical SNR formulae and also our CAI decoding algorithm. There was found to be good agreement between the theoretical formulae and SNR values obtained from simulations. Possible reasons for the lower SNR obtained for the experimental CAI study are discussed.
This is the final draft, after peer-review, of a manuscript published in Radiation Measurements. The published version is available online at
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