Lesson 1 - Course Introduction

Welcome to the Scintillation Technology Course!

The following curriculum includes a general overview of scintillation detectors and is designed to provide students with a general introduction to the composition, critical elements, and use of these fascinating devices.

There are dozens of applications for scintillation detectors. A fundamental understanding of the properties of scintillation detectors sheds light upon a broad cross-section of science and industry. In addition to detector properties, this course will introduce several recently introduced materials, as well as the latest electronics and readout methods.

The course should take about 2.5 hours and may entitle you to 0.5 CEU Units from your employer. This is the second iteration of the BNC Shockwave Course first introduced in 2010. You may skip around as desired but a completion certificate is only provided after the entire course has been viewed and all quizzes attempted. For more in-depth group training or additional discussion, consider Berkeley Nucleonics Onsite Training Programs: email [email protected] or call 800-234-7858, 6:00AM-6:00PM PST.


Enter the Fascinating World of Scintillating Materials!

There are many techniques for detection of radiation. Scintillators are often used for their efficiency with detection of alpha and beta particles, or electromagnetic radiation like gamma‑rays and X‑rays. For each application, a choice must be made for the type of scintillation material, based on qualities such as its required size and readout method. The standard packaging of the detector is a cylinder shape, but depending on the application requirements and selected components, it is possible for the packaging to be customized. The optimized option will always depend on the application and environmental conditions in which the instrument will be used.

Each lesson will provide you with some basic information about the physical properties of different scintillation materials and their typical applications. There are a limited number of standard detector configurations shown as well. In practice, a scintillation detector is often customized for a specific application and the examples shown in this course are only a sample.


Some text may be in BOLD to emphasize key points that will be helpful in industry and for the completion of each lesson. In addition to written material and quizzes, you will find short, narrated videos which aim to help to conceptualize information. You may increase the speed in the video settings box, pause or replay at your discretion.