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Improved Radiation Meter

Counter for alpha, beta and gamma radiation

Improved Radiation Meter

All that’s required to measure radiation is a simple PIN photodiode and a suitable preamplifier circuit. We present here an optimised preamplifier and a microcontroller-based counter. The microcontroller takes care of measuring time and pulse rate, displaying the result in counts per minute.The device we describe can be used with different sensors to measure gamma and alpha radiation. It is particularly suitable for long-term measurements and for examining weakly radioactive samples.

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Gerber file

CAM/CAD data for the PCB referred to in this article is available as a Gerber file. Elektor GREEN and GOLD members can exclusively download these files for free as part of their membership. Gerber files allow a PCB to be produced on an appropriate device available locally, or through an online PCB manufacturing service.

Elektor recommends its business partner Eurocircuits as the company of choice for its own prototypes and volume production in selected cases.

Extra info, Update
* Measures alpha, beta and gamma radiation
* Simple construction using standard components
* PC connection using Elektor FT232R USB/Serial bridge
* Threshold configurable in software from the PC
* Two different types of sensor can be used
Download the BOM list
The BOM (Bill of Materials) is the technically exhaustive listing of parts and other hardware items used to produce the working and tested prototype of any Elektor Labs project. The BOM file contains deeper information than the Component List published for the same project in Elektor Magazine. If required the BOM gets updated directly by our lab engineers. As a reader, you can download the list here.
Want to learn more about our BOM list? Read the BOM list article for extra information.

R1 = 1MOhm
R2, R7 = 1kOhm
R3,R14 = 10MOhm
R4 = 4.7kOhm
R5,R7 = 3.3kOhm 10kOhm
R6,R8 = 330kOhm
R9,R10 = 470Ohm
R11,R12 = 100Ohm
R13 = 5.6Ohm
R1 = 1 M
C1,C2,C3,C9 = 100nF
C4,C5 = 47pF
C6,C7 = 100µF 16V
C8 = 10µF 16V
D1 = BPW34
D2 = 1N4001
D3 = LED, 5mm, green
IC1 = ATmega88PA-PU (Atmel), programmed
IC2 = LM358N
IC3 = 78L05
T1 = BF245B
S1 = pushbutton, 1 make contact
K1–K8 = pinheader, e.g. TE-Connectivity type 3-826926-6
LCD1 = DEM16217, Elektor Shop # 030451-72

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