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[TCML] Need ALPHA WINDOW to detect x-rays in phantom streams

On Wed, 21 Nov 2012, Jeff Behary wrote:
(Though, recently, lightning experts in Melborne FL have witnessed some of my coils and suggested the possibilty of very low level X-Rays being produced from the streams - they were the first experimenters to document non-vacuum X-Rays generated from lightning as well as certain laboratory sparks.super cool work!)

On detecting TC x-rays, here's a possible source of confusion of which to be aware. Geiger counters are extremely sensitive to x-rays; much more sensitive than any phosphor screen ...but this only is true of fairly hard x-rays. Down below 20KV, soft x-rays have a hard time getting through a glass x-ray tube, much less a metal GM counter wall. They also don't penetrate far into water, so they're responsible for the early cases of melanoma (back before the medical designers learned to include a low-cut filter.)

So, in order to solidly reject the possibility of soft x-rays, you really need an alpha-window GM counter. If you only have an inexpensive beta/gamma detector, then you cannot use it to reject the existence of all x-rays.

But also, I've seen one GM counter which, when a "vacuum tester" coil was waved about 9" away from the probe cable, responded with great quantities of random-seeming clicks. I wouldn't have expected such RF interference to sound like a particle flux, yet it did. No buzz, no 120Hz. Best to use a tiny kit-style GM counter inside a metal box with a screen-window.

Here's a brief holiday sale on a tiny GM counter kit, $9.00 without GM tube...


Then just buy a 712 alpha-window tube for about $100 from sparkfun etc., https://www.sparkfun.com/products/8875?


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William J. Beaty                            SCIENCE HOBBYIST website
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