EGU General Assembly 2020
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Making radioactivity measurements on building materials accessible to everyone

Andrea Serafini1,2, Matteo Alberi1,4, Pierluigi Carconi5, Enrico Chiarelli1,2, Pierino De Felice5, Andrea Deserventi3, Massimiliano Donati6, Erica Fanchini7, Ferdinando Giordano7, Paolo Grignani8, Alessandro Iovene7, Luciano Luciani3, Giacomo Manessi8, Fabio Mantovani1,2, Marco Marini6, Massimo Morichi7, Andrea Pepperosa7, Kassandra Giulia Cristina Raptis1,2, Francesco Rogo7, Virginia Strati1,2, and the CORSAIR*
Andrea Serafini et al.
  • 1Department of Physics and Earth Sciences, University of Ferrara, Via Saragat 1, 44121 Ferrara, Italy
  • 2INFN, Ferrara Section, Via Saragat 1, 44121 Ferrara, Italy
  • 3HYDEA S.p.A., Via del Rosso Fiorentino, 2/G, 50142 Firenze, Italy
  • 4INFN, Legnaro National Laboratories, Viale dell’Università, 2, 35020 Legnaro, Padua, Italy
  • 5ENEA, National Institute of Ionizing Radiation Metrology, Casaccia Research Centre, Via Anguillarese, 301 - S.M. Galeria, I-00123 Roma, Italy
  • 6Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell'Informazione, Università di Pisa. Via G. Caruso 16, 56122, Pisa, Italy
  • 7CAEN S.p.A., Via Vetraia N.11, 55049 Viareggio, Italy
  • 8ELSE NUCLEAR s.r.l., Via Isaac Newton 18/20, 50018 Scandicci (FI), Italy
  • *A full list of authors appears at the end of the abstract

The CORSAIR (Cloud Oriented Radiation Sensor for Advanced Investigation of Rocks) project was born to meet the EU guidelines 2013/59/EURATOM on safety standards for protection against ionizing radiations. The project designed an automated system capable of providing a real-time measurement of the radioactive activity concentration index for building materials according to regulations of more than 20 different countries. Measurements are conducted through in situ gamma-ray spectroscopy techniques on 3 x 3 x 3 m3 blocks of rock at quarries and processing centers, and quantify the activities, the abundances and the related effective dose-rates of natural radionuclides (40K, 232Th, 238U and their progenies) in stone materials for the building industry. The detector comprises a 2” x 2” cylindric CeBr3 crystal having a 2.5% energy resolution at 1461 keV. A lateral lead shield of 1.3 cm enables a ~60% reduction of the gamma signal coming from above and beside the detector. The system is designed for providing the radiometric index in less than 30 min with an overall uncertainty of the order of 5%.

The innovative aspects of the detector are in its autonomous operation and the easy fruition of the results of the material characterization. Energy calibration and peak recognition are automatically performed on‑board through an innovative stochastic method based on simulated annealing. The computation of the results is fully-automated and requires no intervention of the operator. The battery-powered detector is equipped with GPS, LoRa, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity and can be remotely controlled thanks to a dedicated Android app. Acquired data and activity indexes are synced through LoRa connectivity to a cloud database, where they can be easily accessed by sellers and buyers, thus preventing the placing on the market of blocks hazardous to public health.


Dimitri Abbado (3), Luca Fanucci (6), Aldo Fazio (5), Gianluca Guiducci (3), Aurora Masuelli (8), Giuseppe Merlino (8), Sawsan Mohsen (3), Giulio Tona (3)

How to cite: Serafini, A., Alberi, M., Carconi, P., Chiarelli, E., De Felice, P., Deserventi, A., Donati, M., Fanchini, E., Giordano, F., Grignani, P., Iovene, A., Luciani, L., Manessi, G., Mantovani, F., Marini, M., Morichi, M., Pepperosa, A., Raptis, K. G. C., Rogo, F., and Strati, V. and the CORSAIR: Making radioactivity measurements on building materials accessible to everyone, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-1149,, 2019


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