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In this paper, a hand-held neutron radiation sensor application is described. The sensor system utilizes a new class of boron-carbide diode that interacts with incoming neutrons. To interface with the boron-carbide diode an integrated front-end is designed in a 1.5/spl mu/m standard CMOS technology. With the diode and front-end microchip, a hand-held neutron detection system was realized with an embedded microcontroller for realtime processing. The hand-held detector operation was then tested with a plutonium-beryllium neutron source. Testing results confirm the validity of the approach and the functionality of the design.