Integrated Cooling System for LN2 Free Operation with No Loss of Detector Performance

The ICS integrated electro-mechanical cooling system for HPGe radiation detectors from ORTEC exploits the most recent generation in cryogenic technology in order to provide LN2-free operation with no loss of detector performance.

ICS is considered to be more efficient and reliable than pulse tube designs as it uses a Sunpower industry proven Stirling cooler. Increased efficiency means enhanced cooling with lower power consumption and proportionally less heat generation. The operational reliability of ICS is unmatched with a cooler Mean-Time-To-Failure (MTTF) of over 200,000 hours.

The ICS comes in two versions to support a wide variety of radiation detector models.

The ICS and ICS-E models are built with a unique, hardened cryostat, for greater reliability, integrity, and operational performance. This feature allows immediate recovery after a loss of power, preventing the need to completely thermal cycle the detector when there is a partial warm-up.

A conventional cryostat used by the ICS-P4 (PopTop® model) provides full compatibility with ORTEC PopTop radiation detector capsules, and it can also be used with either in-field upgrades or new radiation detectors.

All ICS versions are maintenance free, highly reliable, mechanically cooled cryostats that deliver superior performance for HPGe radiation detectors.

All ICS models incorporate Active Vibration Cancellation (AVC™) technology, and are designed to almost eradicate vibrational and audible noise levels. This offers resolution performance comparable to LN2 cooled systems in all operational orientations, making it the most ideal choice for customers seeking premium resolution and versatility in a wide range of HPGe applications.

Typical Applications

  • Nuclear Power and Industrial Plants – The ICS provides an advantage in deployments where power failures are frequent. The hardened cryostat increases detector availability by preventing the need for thermal cycling and decreases equipment down time. Personnel spend less time in radiation “hot” zones as LN2 filling and regular maintenance are not needed. The compact size of the ICS allows effortless installation into existing or new counting setups.
  • Waste Management and Field Remediation – Hardened cryostat version makes the ICS an exceptional choice for applications needing maximum “up time”. PopTop cryostat version permits field upgrades/replacements of the currently available detectors.
  • Research and Education – Similar to Lab applications, the ICS is considered as an excellent choice as there is no compromise of resolution performance and low audible noise. No need for LN2 to give the ICS a low cost of ownership.
  • Homeland Security and Safeguards – The ICS is an unmatched solution in these applications due to a combination of unique features: the hardened cryostat which prevents the need to completely thermal cycle the detector in the event of a partial warm-up or PopTop cryostat which allows field upgrades/replacements, the use of a universal power supply and low power consumption.
  • Commercial, Environmental and Government Labs – The ICS is an excellent choice due to no compromise of resolution performance and low audible noise. There is no requirement for refilling the LN2 on a regular basis, detector availability, providing increased cost savings, and minimizing work hazard.
  • Health Physics –Low audible noise, low heat generation and no compromise on resolution performance give the ICS an edge for HPGe systems in the field of health physics, whether as a new HPGe system or an upgrade.


Spectroscopic Performance

  ICS and ICS-E ICS-P4
New ORTEC Detectors @ ≥100 keV energy equivalent to LN2 with cooler running

@ <100 keV energy up to 10% resolution degradation

(see detector configuration guide for specifications)
@ ≥100 keV energy equivalent to LN2 with cooler running

@ <100 keV energy up to 10% resolution degradation

(see detector configuration guide for specifications)
Existing ORTEC detectors (resolution specifications are relative to existing detector performance in the field) Return to Factory Service Upgrade.* PopTop Detector with LN2 Cryostat
@≥100 keV energy no change
@<100 keV energy up to 10% resolution degradation

PopTop Detector with X-COOLER
No change or lower resolution

Non-PopTop Detector
Return to Factory Service Upgrade* for conversion to PopTop.


Note: Resolution is warranted at room temperature.

  • Performance of an upgraded radiation detector is warranted to be within 10% of the combined efficiency and resolution of the HPGe radiation detector at the time of the upgrade. This will be determined at the factory before reconfiguration.
    An example of combined relative efficiency and resolution is a 10% increase in resolution and 0% decrease in relative efficiency or a 5% increase in resolution and a 5% decrease in relative efficiency.
    Consult the factory for upgrade of a non-ORTEC radiation detector into hardened vacuum or PopTop configurations.

Specifications - Common for ICS, ICS-E and ICS-P4

HPGe Compatibility All ORTEC GEM, GMX and PROFILE detectors.
Resolution (warranted at room temperature) See Spectroscopic Performance
Cooler AMETEK Sunpower with AVC™ (active vibration cancelation) technology.
All-Attitude Operation Yes
Compatible Endcap Windows Aluminum, Carbon Fiber, Beryllium.
Electrical Supply 100–240 V AC (50/60 Hz) auto ranging.
Low/Reduced Background Option Yes
Audible Noise Less than 55 dBA at 1 meter fully operational, below 30 °C ambient.
Environmental Temperature range: –10 °C to 40 °C. Humidity: non-condensing.
Auxiliary Cooling Internal fan (vented).
Backup Battery No built-in battery. ICS is compatible with commercial batteries and universal power supplies (UPS). ORTEC offers an optional UPS.
Cooler Life >200,000 hours.
Warranty 2 years on cryocooler, internal controller and active noise cancellation.
1 year on new detector and preamplifier.
Maintenance No maintenance is required.
Stand Compatibility Stand not included. Optional stand (ICS-STAND2) is available.


Specifications - Unique for ICS, ICS-E and ICS-P4

  ICS and ICS-E ICS-P4
Hardened Cryostat Yes No
PopTop Compatible No Yes
Molecular Sieve No Yes
Weight 40 lbs. (18 kg) excluding the detector. 28.5 lbs. (12.7 kg) excluding the detector capsule.
Typical Power Consumption (at room temperature) 70 W typical, 130 W maximum. 80 W typical, 200 W maximum.
Typical Cooldown Time
• Small Detector
(<40% rel. eff.)
• Medium Detector
(40–70% rel. eff.)
• Large Detector
(up to 100% rel. eff.)
5 hours

6 hours

8 hours
6–8 hours

12–14 hours

14–18 hours
Status Display ICS only
4 LED lights indicate status: power ON/OFF, COLD, cooler On/OFF, preamp count rate.

ICS-E only
2 LED lights indicate status: power ON/OFF, COLD
1 LED light indicate status: power ON/OFF
Preamp Configuration Internal (ICS) or External (ICS-E). See note for ICS below. External
Connectors ICS only (connectors on front panel) (includes detector cable set)
4 each BNC (energy out, energy or timing out, HV Shutdown, test).
1 each SHV cable (high voltage in).
1 each 9 pin (preamp power)
1) Additional BNC is added for TRP preamp (-PL) option.
2) No BNC connectors on housing with SMART option. HV Shutdown out is converted to Temperature Readout in the SMART option.

ICS-E only (includes detector cable set)
Standard 1 ft (0.3 m) detector cable bundle comes from detector endcap.
None (does not include detector cable set)


Note: External and internal preamp configurations are with reference to the cooler enclosure. “External” means the preamp is outside of the cooler enclosure and typically inside the detector capsule. “Internal” means the preamp is inside cooler enclosure which makes the detector capsule smaller. The preamp is inside the detector capsule for most standard streamline and PopTop detectors as described for the “External” configuration.

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