Investigating Beta Particle Backscatter from Foil Materials

In summary, the conversation discusses designing an experiment to investigate the relationship between the thickness of a foil and the proton number of the foil material on the number of beta particles scattered backwards. The experiment will involve using a source of beta particles, such as the common radionuclides K-40 or Sr-90, and a GM tube to measure the number of particles scattered. It is recommended to place the beta source and scattering surface in a vacuum, but precautions must be taken to avoid damaging the detector. If a commercially produced beta emitter is used, it may include the previously mentioned Sr-90.
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I am designing an experiment to investigate how the number of beta particles scattered backwards depends on the thickness of a foil and the proton number of the foil material. I have an idea of what I will do, i.e. I will have the beta particles fired at the foil and place a GM tube next to the source the get the number of particles scattered backwards. i will change the thickness of the foil, and would also change the type of foil (aluminum, tin and some other material).

What source can i use for emitting the beta particles?
 
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  • #2
Salt substitute is made of Potassium Chloride. 0.00118% of the K is a beta emitter at 1.3 and 1.5MeV. Otherwise, you will have to go with a commercially produced beta emitter.
 
  • #3
Where will you be doing this experiment? Most academic departments (Nuclear Engineering or Health Physics) should have a supply of common radionuclides.

You might want to use something like Sr-90, half-life of 29 years, no gamma., and maximum beta energy of 0.546 MeV. It is a pretty common radionuclide.

I would recommend if at all possible, putting the beta source and scattering surface in a vacuum, with the GM just outside. If you do this, be careful that you don't blow out the window of the detector (if thin window, that is).

Otherwise put the scattering foil, source and detector close together. The problem with the latter setup is that you will get a broader distribution of angles.

As Cyclotron Boy inidcated, K-40 is also good because of the long half-life and high max. beta energy.
 
  • #4
Where will you be doing this experiment? Most academic departments (Nuclear Engineering or Health Physics) should have a supply of common radionuclides.
I won't be carrying out the actual experiment, instead I am just designing one. The extra information is helpful because I have to look at safety and precautions too.

I would recommend if at all possible, putting the beta source and scattering surface in a vacuum, with the GM just outside. If you do this, be careful that you don't blow out the window of the detector (if thin window, that is).
What would happen if the detector is inside the vacuum? Would it do more damage to the detector as opposed to the detector being outside the vacuum?

Otherwise, you will have to go with a commercially produced beta emitter.
Would this include the Sr-90 that Astronuc talked about?
 

1. What is "Investigating Beta Particle Backscatter from Foil Materials"?

"Investigating Beta Particle Backscatter from Foil Materials" is a scientific research study that aims to understand and analyze the behavior of beta particles when they interact with different types of foil materials. This research can provide valuable insights into the properties and characteristics of these materials, which can have implications in various fields such as nuclear physics, material science, and radiation safety.

2. How is the backscatter of beta particles measured in this study?

In this study, the backscatter of beta particles is measured using a detector, such as a Geiger-Muller counter, which can detect and count the number of beta particles that are reflected back from the foil material. The results are then analyzed to determine the backscatter coefficient, which is a measure of the percentage of beta particles that are reflected back from the foil material.

3. What factors can affect the backscatter of beta particles from foil materials?

Several factors can affect the backscatter of beta particles from foil materials, including the material composition, thickness, and density of the foil, as well as the energy and angle of the incident beta particles. Additionally, the atomic structure and properties of the foil material can also play a significant role in determining the backscatter coefficient.

4. What are the potential applications of this research?

This research can have various potential applications, such as in the development of new and improved foil materials for use in nuclear reactors, medical devices, and other industries that utilize beta particles. It can also aid in the understanding and prediction of the behavior of beta particles in different materials, which can enhance radiation safety protocols and techniques.

5. How can the findings of this study be utilized in other fields of research?

The findings of this study can be utilized in other fields of research, such as material science and nuclear physics, to better understand the behavior of beta particles and their interactions with different materials. The results can also be used to improve existing models and theories related to radiation and nuclear phenomena, leading to advancements in these fields.

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