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Geiger-Mueller Counters - personal.kent.edu

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Geiger-Mueller Counters
Darwin L. Boyd
Kent State University
School of Technology
Gas Filled Counters
• Ion chambers
• Proportional counters
• Geiger-Mueller counters
Charged Particle Interactions
• Alpha particles (He nuclei) and fast
electrons (beta particles) interact with
matter via the Coulomb force and produce
ionization - ion pairs.
• 30 eV per ion pair
• Ion pairs would like to recombine
• Can be collected by applying an electric
field
Gas Filled Counter
Image from: http://www-istp.gsfc.nasa.gov/Education/wgeiger.html
Pulse Amplitude
Gas Filled Counters
Geiger
Counters
Ion chambers
Proportional
Counters
Applied Voltage
Gamma Ray Interactions
• Gamma Rays (and X Rays) do not interact
via the Coulomb force
• Must undergo a “catastrophic” event
• Result is a fast electron
• “Catastrophic” event usually occurs in the
walls of gas filled detectors
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