Total Ambient Dose Equivalent Buildup Factor Determination for Nbs04 Concrete

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Buildup factors are dimensionless multiplicative factors required by the point kernel method to account for scattered radiation through a shielding material. The accuracy of the point kernel method is strongly affected by the correspondence of analyzed parameters to experimental configurations, which is attempted to be simplified here. The point kernel method has not been found to have widespread practical use for neutron shielding calculations due to the complex neutron transport behavior through shielding materials (i.e. the variety of interaction mechanisms that neutrons may undergo while traversing the shield) as well as non-linear neutron total cross section energy dependence. In this work, total ambient dose buildup factors for NBS04 concrete are calculated in terms of neutron and secondary gamma ray transmission factors. The neutron and secondary gamma ray transmission factors are calculated using MCNP6™ code with updated cross sections. Both transmission factors and buildup factors are given in a tabulated form. Practical use of neutron transmission and buildup factors warrants rigorously calculated results with all associated uncertainties. In this work, sensitivity analysis of neutron transmission factors and total buildup factors with varying water content has been conducted. The analysis showed significant impact of varying water content in concrete on both neutron transmission factors and total buildup factors. Finally, support vector regression, a machine learning technique, has been engaged to make a model based on the calculated data for calculation of the buildup factors. The developed model can predict most of the data with 20% relative error.

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