When light radiations collide with the fluorescent material it produces flashes of light called scintillations. Scintillators are primarily luminescent materials. Scintillation counter is a device used for detecting as well as measuring ionizing radiation. It includes a scintillator which generates light photons in response to the incident radiation .It also has a sensitive photomultiplier tube which converts light to an electrical signal and also includes the needed electronics to process this signal. A scintillation counter constitutes of four main components which include a sheet of scintillator, a light guide, a photomultiplier and the electronics in the p.m. base required to drive the photomultiplier and read out the signal.
Scintillation counters are used since they can be made at a low cost .They offer good quantum efficiency and can determine the energy of incident radiation as well as the intensity. Such kind of scintillation counter can operate in air or vacuum mainly. Scintillation counter has a high counting rate .The sample preparation of such a counter is relatively easy. It has the advantage of high efficiency even at low energies. There are many properties of scintillators, such as high density, fast operation speed, low cost, radiation hardness, production capability, fast time response and durability of operational parameters. A scintillation detector provides more information than a gas filled detector. The soft beta emitters that are not detectable by Geiger counter can be detected by scintillation counter with about 50% efficiency.
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Massive R&D investments, initiatives taken by the government by funding for new scintillator device discovery, growing demand for radiological medical applications and increasing investments for homeland security are few of the factors driving the global scintillation counter market. The major drivers for scintillator counter development with reference to the various applications are high resolution, cost, and size. The global market is expected to witness a relatively high growth rate during the forecast period. The scintillation counters basically are multipurpose particle detectors.
The scintillation counter market is segmented on the basis of type, application and geographical region. On the basis of application scintillation counter market is subdivided into healthcare industry, national and homeland security, defense and nuclear power plants, industrial, personal and environmental monitoring for radioactive contamination, protein interaction and detection, screening technologies, pharmaceutical, ELISA alternative technologies, hand held radiation survey meters, in vivo technologies ,nuclear plant safety and academic research.
In medical application it is used for positron emission topography scan. It is used to image gamma radiation radioisotopes and this technique is called as scintillation camera. Based on the geographical region, the market is segmented into America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. America is likely to hold the major share due to the growing security concerns and increasing number of nuclear power plants in that region .Based on type the scintillation counter market is segmented into two types. The two most important types of scintillator are inorganic just as sodium iodide and organic just as plastic like polystyrene. Plastic scintillation detector are good for large areas. The scintillation detectors are a major class of radiation detectors used in nuclear applications. Sodium iodide scintillation detectors are the most popular which is used for many applications.
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Some of the key players operating in the global scintillation counter market with the most significant development are GE Healthcare Life Sciences (Chicago, Illinois, United States), Hitachi Metals America Ltd., Scintacor (U.K.), CANBERRA Industries Inc., PerkinElmer Inc., AMETEK, Inc., CVR Industries USA, Inc., Toshiba Materials Co., Ltd., Energy Beam Sciences, Inc., LabLogic Systems Ltd, and Toshiba Materials Co., Ltd.