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Promethius
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Message 1332 - Posted: 29 Aug 2012 | 4:32:52 UTC

Can I ask some questions about the sensor you use in this project?

Currently I am running some other BIONC projects and wonder how much CPU time Radioactive@Home will take away from them. Is this project limited to simply logging readings and uploading them to the servers? In that case I imagine it is not very resource heavy.

Does the sensor itself have many configuration options? For instance, does the device emit an audible noise when taking readings and can this be toggled on/off?

Is the lcd screen able to be dimmed? I will likely have this set up in my bedroom and like to darken it at night.

Are there plans to make the logs accessible from a CSV file, so software other than BOINC can access them?

Are GM tubes light or heat sensitive, is placing one on my window sill advisable?

Dagorath
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Message 1333 - Posted: 29 Aug 2012 | 6:31:28 UTC - in response to Message 1332.
Last modified: 29 Aug 2012 | 6:41:02 UTC

Can I ask some questions about the sensor you use in this project?

Currently I am running some other BIONC projects and wonder how much CPU time Radioactive@Home will take away from them. Is this project limited to simply logging readings and uploading them to the servers? In that case I imagine it is not very resource heavy.


It runs as an NCI (non-computation intensive) app under BOINC client. As you guessed, the app merely retrieves readings from the detector, saves them to disk and uploads them to the project server periodically.

Does the sensor itself have many configuration options? For instance, does the device emit an audible noise when taking readings and can this be toggled on/off?


It emits clicks which can be turned off.

Is the lcd screen able to be dimmed? I will likely have this set up in my bedroom and like to darken it at night.


The lcd can be turned on and off but not dimmed. I suspect one could add a pot to make it easy to dim/brighten. Also, toggling the sound and LCD on/off requires editing prefs at the project website then updating the client. If you are adept at cutting traces and soldering in switches I suspect that would work too and be more convenient.

Are there plans to make the logs accessible from a CSV file, so software other than BOINC can access them?


I was working on an app you run independent of BOINC which will query the detector and record events same as the project app. I stopped working on it for a while because other important matters required attention but I plan to polish it and make it a little more user friendly then publish it. It will collect data only from your own detector, of course.

Data from any and all detectors attached to the project is readily available too. See the [url=http://radioactiveathome.org/boinc/forum_thread.php?id=60] Raw data export [/url thread for more info. I have an app written in Python for retrieving the data.


Are GM tubes light or heat sensitive, is placing one on my window sill advisable?


When a particle enters the tube it ionizes a bit of the gas in the tube which makes the gas conductive briefly which allows a pulse of high voltage to pass through the tube. That pulse is detected and counted as an event. Gases must be heated to very high temps before they ionize so sunlight and even the hottest days you'll ever encounter won't ionize the gas and therefore won't cause false readings, AFAIK.

Some folks advise putting the tube outside the window because any contamination will likely appear outside the building before it's brought into the building on footwear, clothing, etc. On the other hand, since the detector is sensitive mainly to gamma radiation and gamma easily penetrates wooden walls, an indoor detector should detect contamination outside the average home. Just my non-expert understanding of how it works, I could be wrong.
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Promethius
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Message 1334 - Posted: 29 Aug 2012 | 7:00:50 UTC

Hi Dagorath thanks for your comprehensive answers. I will be waiting on the next batch of detectors to become available in December.

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Message 1616 - Posted: 4 Feb 2013 | 18:33:48 UTC

I am a new kid on the block, I have put together the C6979 counter kit. This looks like a fun group.
I guess I will have to wait for an email on a sensor, it is too bad that there is not a way to build an interface to use with my current kit.
Gary

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Dagorath
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Message 1618 - Posted: 5 Feb 2013 | 21:48:59 UTC - in response to Message 1616.

Sorry if this is a stupid question but... what is a C6979 counter kit and where does one get one (link please)? There might be a way to use it.

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