Tag Archives: proton

Published In Microbe Hunter Magazine!

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WOW! I got published again in Microbe Hunter magazine!

© 2012 Natural Uranium

Autunite Uranium under long wave UV light

My samples of Uranium taken under a microscope were recently published in the September 2012 edition of Microbe Hunter magazine! Don’t forget to check out my previous published work in the same magazine, Microscopy Meets Gamma Spectroscopy – Modern Day Alchemy

Polonium 210 Gamma – Found?

Filed under Radiation, Science
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Hello,

A week or two ago I set out to detect the infamous Polonium 210 gamma ray at 803.1 keV using a NaI(Tl) scintillation detector and a mere 3.7 kBq of Po210. This isn’t too hard, or so I have been told, to do with a HPGe or using my equipment and a significantly larger activity of Polonium. The problem is that only a few gammas will be emitted, only some will actually reach the detector, and of those only a tiny fraction will be detected! But… Who am I to listen? Lol I think that I found the gamma and it stands out in the spectrum, but I thought I would go a little further. This is not a formal paper (note my informal tone). I just thought that I would post a little more than a simple message.

Polonium 210 Gammas

Polonium 210 Gammas

My Environment

I have a temperature stabilized environment with a average temperature fluctuation of 0.8 c. from the mean over a period of six hours. The detector was allowed a full day to warm up and become stable. Calibration was performed several times and with several sources, including Co60 and Cs137. Redundant calibrations were performed and tested against each other to detect any changes.

The Test

A new (less than seven days old) small circular plastic disk containing approximately (+/- 20%) 3.7 kBq of Po210 was placed directly in front of the detection crystal at a distance of 1 cm. Between the source and the crystal, a thin Pyrex glass layer was placed. The test was allowed to run for six hours and then repeated without the Po 210 source to account for background. The background was removed from the sample spectrum to produce the results.

My Findings

A scientific result which can credibly called “true”, insomuch as any result is true”, requires at least five standard deviations from the mean of a set of data to rule out likely error. Given the very low amount of data logged and the generally entropic nature of the testing setup, such an outcome is unlikely. As a result, a positive declaration of the detection of Po210 gammas using the experiment as performed is unlikely.

A set of 60 data points was taken before and after background removal. These data sets were treated as a population set from which a simple population standard deviation was calculated, for both before and after background removal. Based upon calibration of the unit, the channel numberd 832 was the most likely channel to detect the gamma in. For both the origional data and the data with background removed, the channel, 832, displayed a clearly greater than other channels near it and for the set. For the raw data, channel 832 was 3.3636861676 deviations from the mean and with the background removed, the same channel was 3.2797495046 deviations from the mean. The variance between the data with and without background was 2.56%.

Sample Gross counts
________________________________
Channel     Count          Sigmas
828          17          -0.6757272749
829          16          -0.1812926775
830          21          -0.6757272749
831          28          0.8075765174
832          39          3.2797495046
833          19          -0.1812926775
834          25          0.0659246212
835          19          -0.6757272749
836          27          1.7964457123
.
Sample – Background
________________________________
Channel          Count          Sigmas
828          0          -0.7820334787
829          2          -0.9704752808
830          0          -0.0282662703
831          6          1.2908263444
832          16          3.3636861676
833          2          -0.4051498745
834          3          0.7255009381
835          0          -0.4051498745
836          10          1.1023845423

Coronal Mass Ejection – Detection

Filed under Radiation, Science
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On July 14, 2012 at 1424 EDT (1824 UTC, and 2:24PM local time) I believe that I detected a Coronal Mass Ejection, herein CME, an event where the sun bursts a massive amount of charged particles into space. These events are akin to solar flares, though not actually the same thing. The CME was detected by various organizations around the world and easily seen at SpaceWeather.com. At exatly 1824 UTC my detection units both noted a spike in high energy photon readings (gamma or X-ray from 10keV to 5 MeV).

Methods:

The Nekonome II Gamma Spectrometer, using a Radiation Sensors 6S6P1.5VD NaI(Tl) scintillation detector and a UCS30 MCA was run in multi-channel scaling mode, allowing for a gross count of detected photons for 60 second periods. The results were displayed as an x/y graph with the vertical y axis representing counts and the x axis representing time in increments of 60 seconds. A pancake Geiger Meuller detect with an LND7317 tube and an SE International Geiger counter was placed over other scintillation crystal. As a result, any photon radiation from the sun which impacted the crystal must also pass through the Geiger tube. Both units ran in concert for about an hour and the results were examined.

Coronal Mass Ejection

Coronal Mass Ejection

Results:

Both the output from Nekonome II and Geiger Graph software running on RadiationNetwork.com displayed a larger peak at 1824 UTC. This peak coincided with data from SpaceWeather.com indicating the strike of a CME at that same time. The most likely cause for the detection was a localized particle shower, yet the heavy lead shielding around the crystal detection ensure the energy detected must be above 500 keV and is more than likely above 1 MeV in energy. Without a high range gamma spectrometer, there is not conclusive proof of this find, but very probable data.

From Geiger Graph and the Geiger counter
68 7/14/12 02:21 PM 43 2,262 33 38.295861 -77.491647 59
69 7/14/12 02:22 PM 40 2,302 33 38.295861 -77.491647 59
70 7/14/12 02:23 PM 31 2,333 33 38.295861 -77.491647 59
71 7/14/12 02:24 PM 59 2,392 33 38.295861 -77.491647 59 < - Note the elevated reading.
72 7/14/12 02:25 PM 35 2,427 33 38.295861 -77.491647 59
73 7/14/12 02:26 PM 36 2,463 33 38.295861 -77.491647 59
74 7/14/12 02:27 PM 40 2,503 33 38.295861 -77.491647 59

From Nekonome II (UCS30)
60: 130 | 130 | 126 | 145 | 114 | 150 | 128 | 145 | 139 | 142 |
70: 169 | 129 | 115 | 127 | 150 | 153 | 140 | 145 | 146 | 150 | < - Note the elevated reading at minute 70 (minute 70 is 1824 UTC)
80: 134 | 161 | 125 | 137 | 127 | 135 | 132 | 158 | 139 | 128 |

Nekonome II:
_______________________________________________________________
mean 138.953
median 139. (8 occurrences)
s.d. 12.0346
minimum 109. (element 24)
maximum 169. (element 70)
Total 17,786

169 – 138.953 = 30.047 / 12.0346 = 2.5 StdDiv

Geiger Graph:
_______________________________________________________________
mean 34.0816
median 34. (10 occurrences)
s.d. 5.55697
minimum 21. (element 56)
maximum 59. (element 38)
Total 3340

59 – 34.0816 = 24.9184 / 5.55697 = 4.5 StdDiv

Autunite Uranium Spectrum!

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Autunite

Autunite - Uranium


Autunite is a very beautiful, many might say the most beautiful, uranium-bearing mineral. Autunite contains many amazing isotopes, including a few transuranic elements! I received a sample of the beautiful and deadly mineral from a friend at the cost of an analysis using my gamma spectrometer.

I have finally completed a calibration analysis of my spectrometer, to include a 17 KeV to 2MeV window with a +/- 3KeV tolerance. These are favorable conditions for analysis of uranium and uranium daughters.

Today, I tested my new Autunite sample in my gamma spectrometer to see what I might find within it’s calcium-encrusted innards. The primary natural uranium products are there, as expect: Lead 214 and Bismuth 214 being heavy gamma emitters, lead the way with large spikes at 351.92 KeV, 295 KeV, and 609.31KeV, 1764.49 KeV, respectively. I detected a tiny bit of Radium 226, Uranium 235, and Uranium 238.

Japanese Air Filter Test Results

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Recently, a friend of mine sent me a series of samples from Japan. He, my friend, lives in Japan and obtained these samples at some personal risk. I have started the process of testing each of the many samples using gamma spectroscopy and other techniques. I will be posting my results for each sample as I test them, which may take time given my busy work schedule.

Sample J-F is an air filter from an apartment AC/heater (shown below).
J-F Sample in original bag from Japan. Note the "Hello Kitty" on the bag.

As you can see, the analysis did detect a possible 85 Krypton contaminant, as well as other curious spikes. Please take a look and see what information you can detect from this spectrum and the accompanying data.

AC/Heater Paper Filter Sample J-F From Saga City, Saga Prefecture

AC/Heater Paper Filter Sample J-F From Saga City, Saga Prefecture



 
Full Report – Edited for public release
 
Spectrum Peak Report
 
Spectrum Data Report