A Single Scatter Electron Monte Carlo Approach for Simulating Gamma-Ray Stopping Efficiencies of Geiger Mueller Counters
Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research A, 654, Issue 1, 21 October, pp. 279-287 (2011)
In spite of their relatively poor gamma-ray stopping efficiencies, the Geiger-Mueller (GM) counter is still preferred in many radioisotope gauges for industrial measurements. This is because these detectors exhibit a high degree of robustness in harsh environments, are relatively insensitive to temperature changes in the environment, and are inexpensive compared to other types of radiation detectors. These properties could make the use of GM counters very feasible in a number of industrial applications, such as gamma-ray tomography and gamma-ray density gauges, provided that their gamma-ray stopping efficiencies can be improved. The Monte Carlo (MC) method is a powerful computational physics tool that is utilized very often in the design of radiation detectors and radioisotope gauges. In this work a MC model for GM counters that is benchmarked with experiments at the primary photon energy of 59.5 keV is proposed. This is a specific purpose MC simulation code that, as opposed to publicly available general purpose MC codes, employs single scatter (or microscopic) electron transport and is currently under development. In this paper, the MC code is described in detail and the results of the specific purpose MC code are benchmarked with experiments and two general purpose MC codes, MCNP5 and PENELOPE. It was observed that the specific purpose MC code improved the reduced chi-square value when compared to MCNP5 and PENELOPE.