NeuSand Neutron Detector



NeuSand Neutron Detector

NeuSand Neutron Detector

Leidos has developed an innovative method of detecting the presence of hazardous nuclear materials on military vessels, in cargo areas, at border crossings and in other environments at risk of exposure to radiation.

Neutron Sandwich (NeuSand) is an innovative, flexible neutron detection solution to a critical national security need. It detects neutrons emitted by materials used to make nuclear weapons. Neusand is ideal for detecting smuggled nuclear material at border crossings, airports and ports, and can also be used for nuclear safety.

Fissionable radioactive substances such as uranium or plutonium emit neutrons, a unique indicator of the presence of materials used to manufacture nuclear weapons. NeuSand detects the presence of neutrons by converting light as the neutrons interact with materials in the sensor.

This patented technology is designed to replace older detectors that use Helium-3 (He-3) gas. A byproduct of nuclear weapons production, He-3 is now in short supply, creating an ever-increasing need for an alternative detector. NeuSand is scalable to fit these legacy systems as a "plug-for-plug" replacement of He-3 tubes.


NeuSand's design is scalable to tailor to budget and other requirements. The design can easily be modified to various sizes, shapes, and efficiencies, in addition to fitting into slots that held He-3 tubes. NeuSand is a reliable, low-cost solution that meets ANSI standards, and, unlike other nuclear material sensors, is insensitive to gamma rays which can be found in many benign materials. No gases, fragile tubes, or toxic materials are used in this device.

NeuSand is currently being integrated onto Leidos radiation portal monitors (RPMs) to detect nuclear materials at border crossings. Two different modules are offered:

  • NeuSand Neutron Detection Module (NDM) 2.5 replaces He-3 detectors in RPMs for truck and cargo lanes.
  • NeuSand NDM 4.0 replaces He-3 detectors in RPMs for automobile/personal vehicle lanes.

Future applications for NeuSand include:

  • Neutron survey meter for submarines and other naval vessels
  • Vehicle-mounted search systems
  • Handheld radiation detectors
  • Handheld survey meters
  • Portable backpacks

Technical Specifications

NeuSand NDM 2.5

  • Replaces a single He-3 tube
  • Meets or exceeds neutron efficiency and gamma discrimination requirements
    • Neutron Efficiency: 3.26 cps/ng 252Cf
    • Gamma Discrimination: 3.50x10-8 (20 mR/hr)
    • GARRn: 1.019
  • Tested for electromagnetic interference, electrostatic discharge, temperature, shock, humidity, and blowing/freezing rain per ANSI standards
  • Successful completion of Phase I of Department of Homeland Security Domestic Nuclear Detection Office Neutron Detector Replacement Program

NeuSand NDM 4.0

  • Replaces two He-3 tubes
  • > 4 counts/second per ng of 252Cf, similar gamma ray discrimination performance
  • Same form factor, power requirements, and pulse output at NDM 2.5

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For additional information on NeuSand, please contact us today.

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