Abstract Remote radiation survey equipment was sorely needed at Chernobyl but adequate systems did not exist. The current state of the art still consists of a survey meter mounted on a robotic carriage, which scans an area at many points on a grid. This process is both time consuming and somewhat inaccurate. The system we have developed will overcome these limitations, and would provide significant savings in man-hours and man-rem over manual survey techniques. The system we have developed consists of a collimated ionization chamber mounted in a scanning head. The measurement process is similar to that used in medical computed tomography (CT) imaging and consists of a series of collimator rotations and translations. The key to this work is the use of a collimator to provide position information with a position insensitive detector. In addition, an inverse filter image reconstruction technique has been used to reduce the distortion effects due to the scanner and scanning process in the resulting maps. This technique models the distortion as a linear, space invariant degrading function which is removed in a deconvolution process. We have constructed first- and second-generation prototype scanners, and developed software to produce three-dimensional radiation field “iso-dose” maps. The iso-dose maps will be superimposed on three-dimensional computer-aided design and drafting (CADD) drawings of the radiation area, aiding in the characterization of the source of radiation.