Thursday, September 6, 2012

Little particles physicists grow up

Who would not have ever wanted to find under the Christmas Tree this amazing toy? *_*
Just to increase your desire, here you are the complete list of instruments that you can find inside this fantastic home Atomic Energy Lab:

  • Electroscope
  • Geiger-Mueller counter
  • Sphinthariscope *
  • Wilson cloud chamber
  • Low-level radiation sources:
           - Alpha particles (Pb-210 and Po-210)
           - Beta particles (Ru-106)
           - Gamma particles (possibly Zn-65)
  • Four Uranium-bearing ore samples
  • Nuclear spheres for making a molecular model of an alpha particle
  • The manual: "Prospecting for Uranium"
  • A comic book: "Dagwood splits the atom"
  • Three C batteries

Unfortunately this lab was only available from 1951 to 1952 (or from 1950 to 1951 depending on the site you look). The price was already at that time quite high ($50.00), but now is in such a great demand that a complete set can go for more than 100 times the original price.

I would definitively like to find such a lab in a shell of a market nowadays, maybe in a "safer version" removing some Uranium source and putting instead something related to renewable energies, it would be great :)

* I don't know if you knew already, but a Spinthariscope is a device for observing individual nuclear disintegrations caused by the interaction of ionizing radiation with a phosphor (see radioluminescence) or scintillator. I have to admit that I never heard about it!!
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