Physics Division

Nuclear Weapons and Global Security Data Analysis

Physics Division applies advanced imaging techniques to many applications, from brain imaging to neutron imaging in inertial fusion to threat detection from airborne cameras.  A particular strength is the quantitative analysis of penetrating radiography using techniques such as the Bayesian Inference Engine (BIE). 

An example from the Nuclear Event Analysis Team shows a test object (Figure 1) that is subsequently radiographed using the Dual-Axis Radiography Hydrodynamic Test (DARHT) facility.  Figures 2 and 3 show the radiograph and the inferred density of the object using the BIE, which can be compared to the known object to determine accurate error estimation. 

Test object Figure 1. The test object consists of a 1 cm-radius cavity void surrounded by a 4.5 cm radius surrogate fissile material of tungsten, tantalum, or depleted uranium. This sphere is surrounded by a 6.5 cm-radius copper sphere. At is thickest point, the tantalum test object has an areal density of 180 g/cm2, equivalent to 9” of steel.
Figures 2 and 3: radiograph and the inferred density of the object using the BIE.



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