Date of Award

January 2015

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Nuclear Engineering

First Advisor

Rusi P Taleyarkhan

Committee Member 1

Robert S Bean

Committee Member 2

Robert I Nigmatulin

Committee Member 3

Colin D West

Committee Member 4

Shripad T Revankar


Neutron detection and spectroscopic techniques using state-of-the-art systems is covered. A novel approach using conventional (e.g., LiI, He-3, BF3) detectors coupled with Monte-Carlo code simulations to develop spectroscopy information was developed (in lieu of present-day tedious methods involving data acquisition using a multi-sized set of Bonner spheres). Focus of this thesis work was on developing neutron spectroscopy and multiplicity technology using the underlying science of tensioned metastable fluid detectors (TMFDs) in which neutron radiation interactions with atoms of TMFD fluids cause onset of cavitation bubbles. There are many applications and areas of science that would benefit from an increased knowledge about the relationship between the conditions and states of a metastable liquid and the appearance of cavitation bubbles due to ionizing radiation. One specific area that benefits significantly is the application of such knowledge to TMFDs, which already boast demonstrated and impressive advantages over traditional detection systems with sensitivity over 8 orders of magnitude in neutron energy, 90% intrinsic neutron detection efficiency (in optimal geometry), complete insensitivity to gamma radiation when operating in a neutron detection mode, ~100% sensitivity to dissolved alpha emitters and fission decays, directional information and potentially orders of magnitude reduced cost.