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Author: Subject: Am241 beads
Somerset
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[*] posted on 18-3-2017 at 12:34
Am241 beads


Having several of our these and running through my gamma spectrometry kit, I now want to do something else with them.
1) Spinthariscope
2) source for XRF

Any other interesting suggestions for them please.

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Subverted
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[*] posted on 20-3-2017 at 22:29


Cloud chamber? Im currently trying to work out a fully sealed design for one of those.

Maybe its time for you to build a neutron detection setup? (And then a fast neutron source from Am241+Be.)

Build an alpha spectrometer?

Lots of options for things to do...just dont eat them!
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[*] posted on 21-3-2017 at 03:51


A direct charging generator would be cool and I don’t remember every having seen one amateur scientist-built.

Also, this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCOmPcldqo4




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[*] posted on 21-3-2017 at 05:43


That actually sounds pretty simple to build, at least for a demonstration. Here's a quote from Wikipedia:

Quote:
English physicist H.G.J. Moseley constructed the first of these. Moseley’s apparatus consisted of a glass globe silvered on the inside with a radium emitter mounted on the tip of a wire at the center. The charged particles from the radium created a flow of electricity as they moved quickly from the radium to the inside surface of the sphere. As late as 1945 the Moseley model guided other efforts to build experimental batteries generating electricity from the emissions of radioactive elements.
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phlogiston
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[*] posted on 21-3-2017 at 14:51


Measuring the current to establish that the device is working is probably a greater challenge.

A quick calculation: typical Am241 bead from a smoke detector contains 37 kBq according to wikipedia.
37E3 * 2e = 5.93E-15 A
So about 6 femtoampere.

The energy of the alpha particles is about 5.4 MeV, so theoretically maximal voltage of about 2.7 MV.
electrical energy output 2.7E6*6E-15 = 16 nW.

[Edited on 21-3-2017 by phlogiston]




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[*] posted on 23-3-2017 at 12:07


Quote: Originally posted by Subverted  
Cloud chamber? Im currently trying to work out a fully sealed design for one of those.

Maybe its time for you to build a neutron detection setup? (And then a fast neutron source from Am241+Be.)

Build an alpha spectrometer?

Lots of options for things to do...just dont eat them!


I have a NE technology alpha beta scintillation counter and a feed out to theremino MCA, which I have tried a Am241 pellet Spectra.

I thought alpha spec generally in a vacuum?
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[*] posted on 26-3-2017 at 13:10


Quote: Originally posted by Somerset  

I have a NE technology alpha beta scintillation counter and a feed out to theremino MCA, which I have tried a Am241 pellet Spectra.

I thought alpha spec generally in a vacuum?

Yes, as far as I know alpha spectrometry needs to be conducted in a vacuum.
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[*] posted on 11-9-2018 at 12:35


Quote: Originally posted by phlogiston  

The energy of the alpha particles is about 5.4 MeV, so theoretically maximal voltage of about 2.7 MV.
electrical energy output 2.7E6*6E-15 = 16 nW.

[Edited on 21-3-2017 by phlogiston]


Going out on a limb here, but some sort of ideal field effect transistor could be used to amplify this to a usable signal voltage, perhaps a JFET. I'm sure it would be incredibly difficult to calibrate and distinguish signal from noise though. Just thinking out loud.




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[*] posted on 11-9-2018 at 13:01


Find a racket shape electric bug zapper, put the alpha source towards the grid, turn it on and enjoy the sound from alpha particles ionizing the air in the E field.




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[*] posted on 12-9-2018 at 11:31


Quote: Originally posted by CRUSTY  


Going out on a limb here, but some sort of ideal field effect transistor could be used to amplify this to a usable signal voltage, perhaps a JFET. I'm sure it would be incredibly difficult to calibrate and distinguish signal from noise though. Just thinking out loud.


Or we could just use tech that's older than me.
:-)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrometer#Valve_electromete...
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[*] posted on 13-9-2018 at 01:23


Quote: Originally posted by CRUSTY  
Quote: Originally posted by phlogiston  

The energy of the alpha particles is about 5.4 MeV, so theoretically maximal voltage of about 2.7 MV.
electrical energy output 2.7E6*6E-15 = 16 nW.

[Edited on 21-3-2017 by phlogiston]


Going out on a limb here, but some sort of ideal field effect transistor could be used to amplify this to a usable signal voltage, perhaps a JFET. I'm sure it would be incredibly difficult to calibrate and distinguish signal from noise though. Just thinking out loud.


Or you could use the electronics that come with the Am as part of a smoke detector :D
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[*] posted on 13-9-2018 at 15:22


Quote: Originally posted by Sulaiman  

Or you could use the electronics that come with the Am as part of a smoke detector :D


Oh right...




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