Status of the Monte Carlo library least-squares (MCLLS) approach for non-linear radiation analyzer problems
Radiation Physics and Chemistry, 78, pp. 843-851 (2009)
The Center for Engineering Applications of Radioisotopes (CEAR) has been working for over a decade on the Monte Carlo library least-squares (MCLLS) approach for treating non-linear radiation analyzer problems including: (1) prompt gamma-ray neutron activation analysis (PGNAA) for bulk analysis, (2) energy-dispersive X-ray fluorescence (EDXRF) analyzers, and (3) carbon/oxygen tool analysis in oil well logging. This approach essentially consists of using Monte Carlo simulation to generate the libraries of all the elements to be analyzed plus any other required background libraries. These libraries are then used in the linear library least-squares (LLS) approach with unknown sample spectra to analyze for all elements in the sample. Iterations of this are used until the LLS values agree with the composition used to generate the libraries. The current status of the methods (and topics) necessary to implement the MCLLS approach is reported. This includes: (1) the Monte Carlo codes such as CEARXRF, CEARCPG, and CEARCO for forward generation of the necessary elemental library spectra for the LLS calculation for X-ray fluorescence, neutron capture prompt gamma-ray analyzers, and carbon/oxygen tools; (2) the correction of spectral pulse pile-up (PPU) distortion by Monte Carlo simulation with the code CEARIPPU; (3) generation of detector response functions (DRF) for detectors with linear and non-linear responses for Monte Carlo simulation of pulse-height spectra; and (4) the use of the differential operator (DO) technique to make the necessary iterations for non-linear responses practical. In addition to commonly analyzed single spectra, coincidence spectra or even two-dimensional (2-D) coincidence spectra can also be used in the MCLLS approach and may provide more accurate results.