The ANTARES Instrument Control System for Neutron Imaging with NICOS/TANGO/LiMA Converted to a Mobile System used at Idaho National Laboratory
Burkhard Schillinger, Aaron Craft, Jens Krügerdownload PDF
Abstract. The Neutron Radiography Reactor (NRAD) at Idaho National Laboratory (INL) was designed for thermal and epithermal neutron radiography for examination of highly-radioactive irradiated nuclear fuel elements, exclusively using transfer foils with film or imaging plates. Use of digital detectors was not foreseen in the high radiation environment. Recent collaborative efforts are seeking to introduce digital neutron imaging systems and neutron computed tomography (CT). Two initial camera detector systems were built using a low-price, but high-quality scientific CMOS camera with massive shielding. With no existing electronic infrastructure, it was a challenge to build standalone systems. In first tests in 2017, a Raspberry Pi computer was used as a stepper motor and CT controller inside the East Radiography Station, which crashed in the high radiation field after a few dozen of images even behind 5 cm of lead shielding. In 2018, the network-based and decentralized instrument control system of the ANTARES imaging facility at Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Zentrum (MLZ) of Technische Universität München was scaled down to one laptop and three Raspberry Pi computers mounted outside the radiography bay, which was sufficient to control rotation and translation stages and to control the camera and record tomography measurements. The system is based on NICOS, TANGO, entangle, and LiMA, all four free toolkits for building distributed control systems. Details of the setup are described here. The downscaled system can be used standalone at any facility.
Neutron Imaging, Neutron Computed Tomography, Software, NICOS, TANGO, Entangle, LiMA, Python
Published online 1/5/2020, 5 pages
Copyright © 2020 by the author(s)
Published under license by Materials Research Forum LLC., Millersville PA, USA
Citation: Burkhard Schillinger, Aaron Craft, Jens Krüger, The ANTARES Instrument Control System for Neutron Imaging with NICOS/TANGO/LiMA Converted to a Mobile System used at Idaho National Laboratory, Materials Research Proceedings, Vol. 15, pp 48-52, 2020
The article was published as article 8 of the book Neutron Radiography
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 A.E. Craft, D.M. Wachs, M.A.Okuniewski, et al., Neutron radiography of irradiated nuclear fuel at Idaho National Laboratory, Physics Procedia 69 (2015) 483-490. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phpro.2015.07.068
 http://www. nicos-controls.org
 http://www. tango-controls.org
 B. Schillinger, J. Krüger, A quadruple multi-camera neutron computed tomography system at MLZ, in this issue