So, next on my list is to design a Geiger counter for
BalloonSats. I want one that’s relatively inexpensive, small,
■ The Goldmine
than the RM- 60.
Perhaps, but the
volume isn’t large
enough to account
for rates as high as
we see. It was also
brought up that the
could be an
effect. If so, then a variation of the circuit or mathematical
manipulation in the spreadsheet could offset the errors.
I also wondered if the GM tube had failed in the near
vacuum or if corona discharge occurred. I ran the
Goldmine Geiger counter through the vacuum chamber
once again and observed that it was still performing fine.
My discussions with Aware Electronics made me “aware”
that some Russian GM tubes are pretty old. The tubes
may be fine at qualitatively showing radiation changes, but
not suitable for quantitative work. So, for an inexpensive
way to show how cosmic ray flux changes with altitude,
the Goldmine kit may be fine for a BalloonSat where low
cost is an issue.
■ Cosmic ray flux.
and lightweight. I think I’ll incorporate a PICAXE-08 to do
the counting and allow the BalloonSat’s flight computer to
focus on doing other tasks. You can stay up to date with
my exploits and experiments either at Twitter (#NearSys),
my webpage ( NearSys.com), my You Tube channel
( www.You Tube.com/NearSys), or my occasional blog
entry ( NearSys.blogspot.com).
Onwards and Upwards,
Your near space guide NV
July 2010 71