A radiation detector or particle detector is a device that measures this ionization of many types of radiation, like- beta radiation, gamma radiations, and alpha radiation with the matter. Thus, creating electrons and positively charged ions. In this article, let us discuss in detail about the radiation detector.
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What is a Radiation Detector?
Radiation Detector is an instrument used to detect or identify high-energy particles, such as those produced by nuclear decay, cosmic radiation, or reactions in a particle accelerator.
Evolution of Radiation Detector
Earlier, photographic plates were used to identify tracks left by nuclear interactions. Sub-nuclear particles are discovered by using cloud chambers which needed photographic recordings and a tedious measurement of tracks from the photographs.
Electronic detectors developed with the invention of the transistor. Modern detectors use calorimeters to measure the energy of the detected radiation. They may also be used to measure other attributes such as momentum, spin, charge, etc. of the particles.
Type of Detectors
When excited by ionizing radiation, a scintillator exhibits scintillation which is nothing but the property of luminescence. When a scintillator is coupled to an electronic light sensor such as a photomultiplier tube (PMT), photodiode, or silicon photomultiplier, a scintillator detector. Scintillator-type detectors first convert light into electrical pulses. They use vacuum tubes to perform so.
Gaseous Ionization Detectors
A radiation detection instrument used in particle physics to detect the presence of ionizing particles, and in radiation protection applications to measure ionizing radiation is called Gaseous ionization detectors.
Geiger-Mueller counter, commonly called the Geiger counter is the most commonly used detector. A central wire in between a gas-filled tube at high voltage is used to collect the ionization produced by incident radiation. Although it cannot distinguish between them, it can detect alpha, beta, and gamma radiation.
Types of radiations
The types of radiation detected by these detectors are Alpha, Beta, and Gamma radiation.
- Alpha particles or double ionized helium nuclei are the fast-moving helium atoms.
- They have high energy ranging in MeV.
- They have low penetration depth; typically a few cms of air or skin due to their large mass.
- They are fast-moving electrons.
- Their energy ranges from hundreds of KeV to several MeV.
- They have better penetration depth due to their comparatively lighter mass. Typically, several feet of air, several millimeters of lighter materials.
- They are the stream of photons.
- Typical energy ranges from Several KeV to Several MeV.
- They have comparatively very low mass. Thus, possess good penetration depth. Typically, a few inches of lead
Hope you have understood about the Radiation detector, their types, functions along with types of radiations, and their properties.
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Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs
What is a radiation detector?
Radiation Detector is an instrument used to detect high-energy particles, such as those produced by nuclear decay, cosmic radiation, or reactions in a particle accelerator.
What is the function of vacuum tubes in scintillators?
Vacuum tubes in scintillators convert light into electric pulses.
What does the abbreviation PTM stand for?
PTM stands for Photomultiplier tube
What is used in the Geiger-Mueller counter to collect ionized radiations?
A central wire in between a gas-filled tube at high voltage is used to collect the ionization produced by incident radiation
What is Alpha radiation?
Alpha radiation is the stream of doubly ionized helium nuclei
What is Beta radiation?
Beta radiation is the stream of electrons.
What is Gamma radiation?
Gamma radiation is the stream of photons.