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Seminar: From eV to MeV: Laser- and Accelerator-based Detection of Nuclear Materials

Igor Jovanovic, PhD, University of Michigan
Wednesday, August 29, 2018, 11:10 am to 12:10 pm
Scott Laboratory
201 W 19th Ave
Columbus, OH 43210


Detection of shielded special nuclear material, especially in transit, is arguably one of the grand challenges in nuclear security. Another long-standing problem has been the detection of both radioactive and non-radioactive materials associated with proliferation activities rapidly and at large standoff distances. Fundamental limitations present in such measurements may be addressed by active interrogation that uses penetrating, time-structured and directional radiation probes. During this seminar research activities pertaining to detection of shielded special nuclear material using MeV-class monoenergetic photons produced in low-energy nuclear reactions will be reviewed. Included will be a discussion of how eV-range optical photons from ultrafast lasers can be employed for standoff measurements, focusing on our recent progress in isotopically sensitive detection of elemental uranium and uranium compounds by atomic and molecular spectroscopy.


About the speaker

Igor Jovanovic received his BS/MS in electrical engineering from the University of Zagreb, Croatia in 1997 and his PhD in nuclear engineering from the University of California, Berkeley in 2001. He was a staff physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory during the period of 2002-2007, after which he served as a faculty member at Purdue University and Penn State University. Since 2016 he has been a professor of nuclear engineering and radiological sciences and professor of applied physics at the University of Michigan. His group conducts research in the area of applied nuclear science, with primary focus on nuclear security, nonproliferation, nuclear forensics and ultrafast optics. His work has been funded by DARPA, ONR, DTRA, DOE, NSF, DHS, NRC and industry. Jovanovic is a recipient of the DARPA Young Faculty Award and the DHS Nuclear Forensics Junior Faculty Award. He serves as the director of Michigan University's Neutron Science Laboratory, leader of the Applied Nuclear Science Group and is a member of the High-Field Science Group in the Center for Ultrafast Optical Science.

Hosted by Professor Raymond Cao.