Florida State University researchers have developed a new material that can be used to create flexible X-ray detectors. They are less harmful to the environment and cost less than existing technologies. A team led by Biwu Ma, a professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, has created X-ray scintillators that use environmentally friendly material. Their research was published in the journal Nature Communications.
The development of inexpensive scintillation materials that can be easily manufactured and work well remains a major challenge. The new work paves the way for exploring new approaches to creating these important devices, scientists say.
X-ray scintillators convert X-ray radiation into visible light, and they are a common type of X-ray detector. When you visit a dentist or airport, scintillators are used to take pictures of your teeth or scan your luggage.
Various materials have been used to make X-ray scintillators, but their production can be difficult or expensive. Some recent developments use compounds that contain lead and its toxicity may be of concern.
A team of scientists have found another solution. They used a compound organic manganese halide to create scintillators that do not use lead or heavy metals. This compound can produce a powder that is very good for imaging and can be combined with a polymer to create a flexible composite that can be used as a scintillator. This flexibility expands the use of this technology.
The technology combines low cost with high performance and environmentally friendly materials.