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Adding a radioactive check-source, like a thorium welding rod, may produce some interesting results. ;)

We had a chunk of old-school Fiestaware for demos in the physics department; lots of short-range clouds boiling off the surface in the cloud chamber. Glazed with natural uranium oxide... o_O

It's crazy to think about how many radioactive sources we come into contact on a day-to-day basis. I mean, thorium toothpaste was a thing.


People often bring up bananas as everyday radioactive objects. Would they even show up if you hold one next to the tank?

I've a cheap Geiger that can detect alpha, beta, and gamma. Bananas do nothing that my detector can measure.

From https://xkcd.com/radiation/

* Eating a banana: 0.1 µSv

* Background daily dose: 10 µSv

The calculation is probably more complicated, but as a back of the envelope estimation I expect that a banana increase the background radiation in a 1%: So it will be difficult to measure with a cheap equipment just counting the number of detections.

[If your device can measure the energy of the particles, perhaps you can see some peak?]

[If you log all the event for a day, with and without a banana, perhaps the 1% difference is statistically significant.]

I think you'd have better luck with potassium salt, but trying different things out is the fun part.

I'm curious -- what kind of interesting results should we be on the lookout for?

I gotta admit that is pretty dang cool. Thanks for the video!

np. Nuclear science is pretty cool.

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