Sciencemadness Discussion Board
Not logged in [Login ]
Go To Bottom

Printable Version  
Author: Subject: Electrostatic generator from Alpha,or Beta emitters!
Admagistr
Hazard to Others
***




Posts: 120
Registered: 4-11-2021
Location: Central Europe
Member Is Offline

Mood: The dreaming alchemist

[*] posted on 20-11-2021 at 18:35
Electrostatic generator from Alpha,or Beta emitters!


I'm pursuing the idea of creating an electrostatic generator from Alpha,or Beta, emitters. The idea is to place a source that emits electrically charged particles on the pad a very well-insulated to ground in a vacuum and place near it a rounded insulated metal to earth,which does not interact with alpha or beta radiation. What do you think will it work? And what kind of emitters is effective for this and available to an amateur?


[Edited on 21-11-2021 by Admagistr]
View user's profile View All Posts By User
Sulaiman
International Hazard
*****




Posts: 3211
Registered: 8-2-2015
Location: UK ... on extended Holiday in Malaysia
Member Is Offline


[*] posted on 20-11-2021 at 20:38


Calculate the coulombs per second based on the number of charged particles per second,
then consider the hazards of such sources considering manufacture, transport, storage, disposal and accidents.
Its a non-starter.

Electronic (flyback transformers, voltage multipliers etc.) methods are simple, cheap and MUCH safer.




CAUTION : Hobby Chemist, not Professional or even Amateur
View user's profile View All Posts By User
Twospoons
International Hazard
*****




Posts: 1174
Registered: 26-7-2004
Location: Middle Earth
Member Is Offline

Mood: A trace of hope...

[*] posted on 20-11-2021 at 20:41


Yes, it should work. Am 241 and tritium come to mind as most accessible. With an Alpha decay energy of >5MeV it should be possible to reach millions of volts with Am241.
But is it practical? One smoke detector has only a fraction of a microgram of Am241 -> activity of 37kBq, which would provide a charging current of ~0.0046pA. That would charge one picofarad of terminal capacitance to 1 volt in about 3 1/2 minutes.

So to get any kind of substantial charge, on any kind of reasonably useful size terminal capacitance, is going to take a very long time or need quite a bit of radioactive material.

Somebody check my math - but I'm fairly sure thats about right.




Helicopter: "helico" -> spiral, "pter" -> with wings
View user's profile View All Posts By User
zwt2
Harmless
*




Posts: 16
Registered: 3-9-2019
Member Is Offline

Mood: CHoCoLaTe

[*] posted on 21-11-2021 at 10:35


It sounds like you're trying to make a Moseley-style atomic battery.

"The attainment of high potentials by the use of radium" by H. G. J. Moseley




"Since you belong to the small number of wise men... tell me, pray, how do you occupy yourselves?"
View user's profile View All Posts By User
Admagistr
Hazard to Others
***




Posts: 120
Registered: 4-11-2021
Location: Central Europe
Member Is Offline

Mood: The dreaming alchemist

[*] posted on 21-11-2021 at 15:06


Thanks very much guys! I didn't know anything about Moseley atomic battery until now, great information for me! Thanks for the calculations too! I have one more question, americium, or tritium in sufficient quantity is unavailable to the amateur. Could a thorium compound be used too? In sufficient quantities an amateur could occasionally get to it, if he is very lucky and had a lot of money... But the problem I see is that thorium turns into different isotopes of other elements that release gamma, or Beta radiation:-(
This radiation ionizes the environment and could abolish the resulting charges. Do you see a solution? Such a battery based on thorium compounds would, of course, give much less power than an americium or a tritium battery...One other way I can think of is to create a really big Van De Graaff generator and accelerate some charged particles and, through them, transform some suitable element into another which is an alpha or a beta emitter...Such a battery could then be an "eternal" electrostatic generator! I know they are other much safer high-voltage sources have been mentioned, but I'm curious, and I'm very attracted to the idea, it seems an original solution, and a generator/battery using a powerful emitter would be extremely powerful!


[Edited on 21-11-2021 by Admagistr]

[Edited on 21-11-2021 by Admagistr]

[Edited on 21-11-2021 by Admagistr]
View user's profile View All Posts By User
neptunium
International Hazard
*****




Posts: 974
Registered: 12-12-2011
Location: between Uranium and Plutonium
Member Is Offline


[*] posted on 21-11-2021 at 15:39


I think you`d be wasting your time with Thorium. Sure it is plentiful, safe to handle and accessible fairly easily, The secular equilibrium with other beta or gamma emitter is not really a problem considering the ridiculously long half life of Th232. And there is a big problem. its not generating enough alpha particles to be useful in that way.
I have not seeing anybody mentioning Polonium yet ? any of you familiar with the "static master" brushes brand ?
https://amstat.com/products/anti-static-brush-with-ionizing-...
Available on amazon or ebay these source pack quite a punch and are exempt from NRC regulations. Po210 decays directly into a stable Pb206 with a powerful alpha at about 5300 Mev...The downside of course is a much shorter 138days half life which should still leave you enough time to mess around a little
View user's profile Visit user's homepage View All Posts By User

  Go To Top