Nuts and Volts GM article

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Richard Hull
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Nuts and Volts GM article

Post by Richard Hull » Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:26 am

I received my latest Nuts and Volts magazine. (August 2017) In this issue they tell how to make a geiger counter. They have had many articles in the last 20 years on this topic, but this one is pretty nice. It uses a CTC-5 Russian, beta-gamma, GM tube. I have 10 of them here.

The article is cool in that the author made the counter to read his radioactive cat, "Maxwell", who had a hyper-thyroid condition that demanded that all or part of his thyroid be destroyed. This is very common in people with hyper-thyroidism. Kill the offending organ from within. (no surgery) Apparently they are using it on pets, too! This calls for a super high dose of highly radioactive Iodine 131. Since his kitty was going to have the injection, he readied himself by constructing a GM counter, on the cheap.

The article is very complete and many details and sidebar sources are included. As the iodine concentrates in the thyroid, it also is excreted in the urine and skat. The author notes how hot the kitty litter was as well as Maxwell, himself, in data collected charts and graphs. The half life of iodine 131 is just a few weeks and Maxwell responded well. A great and informative article.

I used to order Iodine 131 from Oak Ridge back in the 60's and 70's when it was sent in license-free quantities to experimenters for just a few bucks. along with cobalt 60, cesium 137, carbond 14 and about 30 other cool, yet very hot, radio nuclides in raw soluable chemical form...(not sealed sources!). All of these are still available, but now in securely sealed sources. Instead of 5 bucks each, they are now about $70.00 each.

Many humans, today, receive a plethora of nuclear injections as part of stress tests, etc.. Mostly Technicium99. I know a lady that had her thyroid radio nuclear destroyed and she could not be in the presence of her husband or kids for a protracted period for about a month! (humans take a far more mighty dose of iodine 131 than a kitty) She would make a GM counter sing like crazy at 12 feet! Her husband slept on the couch two rooms away. Some folks are so hyper and radiation fearful that they go to a motel for a week or two.

If you get a chance or are interested, snag a copy of the August Nuts and Volts at a full featured book seller or newstand.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Bob Reite
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Re: Nuts and Volts GM article

Post by Bob Reite » Thu Aug 03, 2017 4:09 am

I remember when I had a Thallium stress test and my GM counter said I was a real "Hot guy" for about a month.
The more reactive the materials, the more spectacular the failures.
The testing isn't over until the prototype is destroyed.

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Richard Hull
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Re: Nuts and Volts GM article

Post by Richard Hull » Thu Aug 03, 2017 3:06 pm

My wife had one of those nuke stress tests and while sitting downstairs, I took a gamma spectrum upstairs! Those gammas really blast out. You shine like the sun.

I keep the bulk of my most sensitive, larger instruments in my air-conditioned upstairs lab area. My main, large attached lab remains unheated and is not air-conditioned. My city is famous for high humidity except in the dead of winter. No need exposing a lot of precious, precision gear to temperature and humidity extremes, especially my 3" and 5" Bicron NaI:Tl crystal detectors.

I have to keep the machine tool bed ways, chucks and exposed iron and steel surfaces well oiled to avoid rust in the big lab. Of course, any good machinist type does this as a matter of standard, good practice.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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