Radioluminescence

Isn’t that a fun word? Say it, Radioluminescence. See, told you so. I am doing a bit of a report on it for manufacturing. We have to pick a product and do a report on the manufacturing processes required for it. I decided on making radioluminescent exit signs, powered by glass tubes coated with a phosphorescent and filled with tritium. The tritium which is a heavy form of hydrogen having 2 neutrons rather than none, decays into helium-3, releasing an electron.

1 proton + 2 neutrons -> 2 protons +1 neutron + 1 electron

That electron strikes the phosphorescent creating a flash of light, in the same way the electron beam in your Tv or monitor fires electrons at your screen, which is also coated with a phosphorescent. The beta particles are mostly absorbed by the phosphorescent, and those that are not are either absorbed by the glass or reflected by it until they are eventually absorbed, releasing no radiation outside the glass tube. By placing a few of these into a housing and butting a cut-out with the letters EXIT on it over the face, you have yourself a lighted exit sign that requires no battery backup, wiring, light bulbs, or any other maintenance whatsoever, and can last from anywhere between 10 and 20 years. Yes, there are some associated risks like vial breakage and gas release, but tritium is actually the safest of all radioactive isotopes, and the beta particles emitted cannot pass through skin and any gas inhaled is passed through with your urine, and not absorbed into your bone marrow. Also, since it is still hydrogen, the gas dissipates in the air very quickly, and there is rather little in each vial anyway. Very cool stuff.

Also, i watched the Jerk today. Very cool movie, very funny. If you have never seen it, do yourself a favor and do so. It is on TV semi-often, or you can just rent it.

Other movies seen recently include Fantastic 4 (good, must do sequel, as there was maybe too much intro plot, and not enough save-the-world plot), Mr. and Mrs. Smith (good), and Elektra (not so good). Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle is sitting here too, since jenn fell asleep and missed half of it last time. I liked it, so we get to watch again. Also a very good movie if you haven’t seen.

OK, I guess that is all. Go back about your merry lives till I decided to honor you with my presence again.

nick

One thought on “Radioluminescence

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s