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Radioactivity detection using very simple ionization chamber and a single J-FET transistor

Radioactivity detection using very simple ionization chamber and a single J-FET transistor

Robert Gawron writes:

Today I will show a very simple ionization chamber that can detect radioactivity. I was able to detect with it ionizing radiation from a smoke detector (Am241 isotope). It’s also immune to electromagnetic interference (EMI) due to a good shielding.

This device doesn’t explicitly use any power supply. It’s connected to a multimeter set to measure resistance, in this mode, the multimeter provides a small voltage to its probes (R=I/U, so to measure resistance, it has to put voltage across measured element). This is sufficient here, because basically we just need to polarise electrodes of the ionization chamber and nothing more. My multimeter provides 5.6V in this mode.
My setup is presented below, note that the sensor is this metal box, not the PCB visible on the image.

More details at Robert Gawron’s blog.

 

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