Skip to content
3D Printing Certification

Silverside Detectors functioning with Onshape to make nuclear radiation sensors


Silverside Detectors, a Massachusetts-based mostly corporation specializing in nuclear safety, is applying resources from Onshape, a cloud-centered CAD software provider. The goal is to establish lower-cost compact-sized nuclear radiation detectors.

Philip Taber, Silverside VP of Hardware Engineering, praised the performance of Onshape software, “We switched to Onshape since we urgently necessary aid with knowledge administration.”

“Onshape probably cuts our design time in 50 % due to the fact we’re creating our parts alongside one another in a single put as opposed to flipping again and forth among information. We can make changes without having stressing about breaking the assembly.”

Philip Taber designing the nuclear radiation detector in Onshape. Image via Silverside Detectors
Philip Taber designing the nuclear radiation detector in Onshape. Picture by means of Silverside Detectors

DARPA’s SIGMA software

Defense Superior Exploration Initiatives Agency (DARPA) of the U.S Office of Defense (DoD) initiated the SIGMA project, in 2014. Its goal is to shield U.S citizens from nuclear and “dirty bomb” (a regular bomb packed with radioactive materials) assaults.

Method Supervisor and Applied Physicist at DARPA, Dr. Vincent Tang, states, “The SIGMA application aims to revolutionize detection and deterrent abilities for countering nuclear terrorism.”

Tang even more elaborates, “A critical element of SIGMA as a result involves acquiring novel techniques to accomplish lower-charge, superior-efficiency, packaged radiation detectors with spectroscopic gamma and neutron sensing capability.”

Vincent Tang: Not Even Once (DARPA "Wait, What?")

Nuclear radiation detection

Helium-3 is an isotope of the helium gas. It is non-radioactive and is utilised in the detection of nuclear radiation.

In the latest years, owing to the greater threat of nuclear terrorism, the demand from customers of helium-3 has peaked, which has resulted in a lack of the isotope. In 2001, the demand from customers of helium-3 was 8,000 liters per year, whereas in 2008 it went up to 80,000 liters/12 months, lowering the accumulated stockpile of the isotope.

A person way to counter this challenge is applying factors other than the helium-3 and building smaller sized radiation sensors. Silverside Detectors, doing the job on the SIGMA software and partly funded by DARPA, has a solution. The firm wants to create a lithium-primarily based (Li-6) neutron detectors, which is compact in sizing and price tag-powerful.

A 3D model of a Silverside neutron detector. Image via Silverside Detectors
A 3D model of a Silverside neutron detector. Impression through Silverside Detectors

Leveraging 3D technologies

Use of 3D printing certification in nuclear science is not new. As has been previously noted, the U.S. Division of Energy has also been concerned in tasks, this kind of as 3D printing certification sensors for nuclear turbines.

Now, Onshape with its 3D application abilities will help Silverside Detectors pace up the progress of the Li-6 nuclear radiation detector.

Jon Hirschtick, CEO of Onshape even further extra, “Silverside Detectors is genuinely creating the earth a a lot safer position … We’re very pleased that Onshape is participating in a purpose in dashing up the manufacturing of their nuclear radiation detectors and finding them deployed on the floor as promptly as probable.”

3D Printing certification Awards 2019 will be held soon. Make sure you fill in the type to make nominations.

For more information on how 3D printing certification is impacting the broader globe, subscribe to our 3D printing certification e-newsletter. You can also abide by us on social media, Facebook and Twitter.

Searching for a career? Our 3D Printing certification Positions web page has loads of choices for you.

Highlighted graphic displays a 3D model of a Silverside neutron detector. Image by way of Silverside Detectors