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The Nuclear Engineering Department at Virginia Commonwealth University has an unmet need for an automated source detector positioner for radiation detection experiments that are carried out in lab work. During radiation data collection in radiation detection systems it is of the utmost importance that radioactive samples are positioned and moved with the highest degree of precision possible. This high degree of precision allows for more meaningful data to be collected. The current methods employed by the Nuclear Engineering Department are not as accurate as they can be due to the fact the the current detection systems are manual. Furthermore they are aligned only by sight and have fixed shelving positions. The figure below is the solution to this issue: An automated Source-Detector Positioner for Radiation Detection. This detection system has been design to have a low tolerance so that radiation samples are always centered in the “Sample holder/clamp” over the radiation detector probe. Two stepper motors move along rods, lifting or lowering the sample holder to the desired position over the radiation detection probe. There is also an optional shielding component for the limitation of radiation emission that improves on the shelving method from previous devices. This is all supported with 3D printed rings and metal rods.

Publication Date



Engineering | Mechanical Engineering | Nuclear Engineering

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Jessika V. Rojas Marin

VCU Capstone Design Expo Posters


© The Author(s)

Date of Submission

May 2018

Automated Source-Detector Positioner for Radiation Detection