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A light weight multichannel analyser and $$\gamma $$ γ -ray spectroscopy system: Application to estimate $$^{40}$$ 40 K content in some potassium salts and building materials



A \(\gamma \)-ray spectroscopy system based on a 1\(^{\prime \prime }\times 1^{\prime \prime }\) NaI(Tl) detector and 1.5\(^{\prime \prime }\) photomultiplier tube has been developed at IUAC for teaching laboratory applications involving radioactive sources. Following along the lines of the Phoenix and Expeyes hardware developed in the laboratory earlier, a low-cost, light weight multichannel analyser also has been developed. Here the details about the same are presented. The detector–analyser system has been used as a part of the postgraduate curriculum for measuring \(^{40}\)K content in some potassium salts and common building materials like brick, cement, concrete and sand.
A light-weight multichannel analyser (MCA)-based γ-ray spectrometer, developed earlier at the Inter University Accelerator Centre, New Delhi, has been used as part of the PG curriculum, to determine the effective atomic numbers for γ attenuation of ¹³⁷Cs γ-ray in different types of samples. The samples used are mixtures of graphite, aluminum and selenium powders in different proportions, commercial and home-made edible powders, fruit and vegetable juices as well as certain allopathic and ayurvedic medications. A narrow beam good geometry set-up has been used in the experiments. The measured attenuation coefficients have been used to extract effective atomic numbers in the samples. The results are consistent with XCOM values wherever available. The present results suggest that the γ attenuation technique can be used as an effective non-destructive method for finding adulteration of food materials.
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