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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2011, Article ID 523638, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/523638
Research Article

Fluoride Nanoscintillators

1Center for Optical Materials Science and Engineering Technologies (COMSET), School of Materials Science and Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634, USA
2Physics Department, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078, USA
3Department of Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29625-6510, USA

Received 10 May 2010; Revised 23 July 2010; Accepted 28 September 2010

Academic Editor: Quanqin Dai

Copyright © 2011 Luiz G. Jacobsohn et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

A preliminary investigation of the scintillation response of rare earth-doped fluoride nanoparticles is reported. Nanoparticles of CaF2 : Eu, BaF2 : Ce, and LaF3 : Eu were produced by precipitation methods using ammonium di-n-octadecyldithiophosphate (ADDP) as a ligand that controls growth and lessens agglomeration. The structure and morphology were characterized by means of X-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy, while the scintillation properties of the nanoparticles were determined by means of X-ray and 241Am irradiation. The unique aspect of scintillation of nanoparticles is related to the migration of carriers in the nanoscintillator. Our results showed that even nanoparticles as small as ~4 nm in size effectively scintillate, despite the diffusion length of e-h pairs being considerably larger than the nanoparticles themselves, and suggest that nanoparticles can be used for radiation detection.