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Development and applications of micro-pattern gaseous detectors for muon tomography

Abstract : This thesis describes the first attempts to perform both absorption and scattering muon tomography using high granularity Micromegas detectors. This imaging technique using the free, available and harmless cosmic ray muons radiation shows great possibilities to study various sized objects. In order to make compact and precise portable devices, using one channel of electronics per readout pattern is not possible. To avoid this problem multiplexed detectors have been designed, extensively tested and used in numerous conditions. Latest developments in Micromegas design have been used such as the genetic multiplexing and the 2D strip readout using a resistive layer. The prototypes made were able to achieve a 300µm resolution at the scale of 50cm while using only 61 channels of electronics. Using these detectors, muography data taking campaigns have been performed both in the semi-controlled environment of the Saclay site of CEA and in the wild of the Giza plateau in Egypt. These two campaigns succeeded in imaging the CEA Saclay water tower and the Khufu's pyramid despite the extreme conditions endured by the Micromegas muon telescopes. Large temperature variations of a few tens of Kelvin have been recorded together with a stable operation i.e. an even gain ensuring a steady self triggering system. This stability was achieved using high voltage variations with respect to the environmental conditions. Together with this very first worldwide operation of a Micromegas-based tracker outside a laboratory, scattering muographies have also been done. A small setup imaging handheld objects performed well in separating various materials in time scales of the order of the day while a bigger 1m² setup allowing the scan of a full container was successfully operated. The inversion of the ill-posed problem of the muon scattering was performed using the crude PoCA method and the maximum likelihood one described by Schultz et al.
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  • HAL Id : tel-01759508, version 1

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Simon Bouteille. Development and applications of micro-pattern gaseous detectors for muon tomography. Instrumentation and Detectors [physics.ins-det]. Université Paris-Saclay, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017SACLS210⟩. ⟨tel-01759508⟩

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