Forums Splitboard Talk Forum Geiger Counter : which one?
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  • #574580
    124 Posts

    sorry if this thread sounds a bit strange but we live in a brave new world…

    Any of you guys on are nuclear physicist or related by any chance?

    I am a noob in that field. I would like to buy a geiger counter and bring it back to Japan once I go back. I am not sure which kind does what and what kind of ionized particles/radiations as well as levels of sensitivities are needed. I have seen there are quite a few models out there but not sure which one is the “best”.

    Thanks in advance

    2486 Posts

    Go Back? You may want to think about that. Cancer aint cool

    1165 Posts

    From what I’ve seen, most people wouldn’t even know how to interpret the readings on a Geiger Counter. You are probably wasting your money on that one. The better plan would be to move to an area which wasn’t in the radiation zone. I am sure the news media and such will have enough experts pouring over the area that you’ll know if the levels are safe or not.

    77 Posts


    Good luck.

    124 Posts

    hmmmm, maybe I am wasting my time, not sure tbh. I was under the impression that the modern instruments were fairly easy to use. I’ll double check that. I am not looking for super-duper lab type instruments, just an easy to use portable one that allows me to check the air, food, etc…

    I really hope I can go back to Japan once the situation clears up (hopefully). A few of my friends back home have had thyroid problems after the chernobyl cloud flew over us many years ago so I am quite worried indeed.

    Thanks for the link, gonna check that right away.

    By the way, in the midst of my searches, I have learnt something interesting. It seems one way to check the sensitivity of a geiger counter is to check the radioactivity emitted by a ….. banana. Seems the level of potassium in them is enough to get sensitive instruments detecting it.

    Anyway, still looking around

    124 Posts
    124 Posts

    Looks like everything is out of stock since the nuclear crisis in Japan….

    1 Posts

    I wouldn’t worry about it too much. This whole thing is being a bit over done by the media. Ya, its a scary situation and just getting under control now but by the sounds of the news the world is in threat of a HUGE nuclear/radioactivity problem.

    Its not and I am sure Japan isn’t. It was a black swan incident that I am sure Japan and other nuclear companies will educate themselves on in the future.

    bones get broke
    298 Posts

    Having a Geiger counter won’t protect you from radiation. It’ll just show you what kind of radiation levels that you’re being exposed to. The only known form of protection from radiation is the Time-Distance-shielding triangle. Radiation behaves exactly like visable light in that if you move away from it or cover it up, you are no longer seeing as much of it. Relate that to radiation exposure and you’ve got a perfect analog. Shielding is a little more complicated because of the three different forms of radiation; Alpha particle, Beta particle, and Gamma ray. Alpha and Beta particles can be shielded by paper or aluminum foil (respectivly). The third type, Gamma Ray, is emitted by Radio isotopes like Iridium 192, Cesium 137 or Cobalt 60. Gamma radiation is much more difficult to shield in that you need very dense materials like Lead, Tungsten or Uranium to absorb the rays before they can pass through and destroy human tissues.

    If you simply need to go back to Japan in the near future, I’d recommend that you save the $1500 that you’d likely spen on a survey meter and instead invest in some shielding materials. Get a lead vest like the one you have to wear at the radiologist when they x-ray you and some quality respritory protection that can be worn at all times. Make sure the vest covers your gnarlies too. Radiation destroys and mutates the DNA that your sperms are trying to start the next generation of Splitters with, Although a three legged dude could break in and set a bomber skintrack.

    Hope this helps.

    124 Posts

    Thanks for the info.

    I must say I never really worried about the nuclear risk even though I knew the potential for accidents was there. There have been problems at power plants in japan before but never of such a magnitude. It is true that it really is a black swan event but it still happened.

    I do understand that the survey meter will not protect me from radiations, but it can tell me if the levels out there are such that I need to protect myself/my family. I do not see wearing a lead vest everyday to work from now on. :-). Not all meters will detect all types of radiations but it seems you can get an alpha/beta/gamma for 300+ bucks which is not so bad all things considered.

    Back home in the french alps, after chernobyl went over our heads, we could not eat mushrooms and other types of foods for years because they (apparently) very easily absorbed radiations. There were some issues with milk etc… as well. So I guess scanning my vegies for a while might be worth it as I will not be able to tell where they come from and whether or not they have been affected.

    I’ll try to keep my gnarlies away from harm’s way as I would not want them to glow in the dark, although a 3-legged skin track could be cool for dear old dad & his pot belly 😆 ok, gonna go out and check for lead undies now 😉

    bones get broke
    298 Posts

    Well the US Nuclear Regulatory Commision (NRC) has a regulated radiation level of 2mR/hr (2 mili Roentgens per hour) for the general public. If you are concerned about safe Gama levels for your family, I’d start with that figure. No level of Alpha or Beta (which no meter can differentiate between the three types of radiation) is safe as you absorb the particles and they continue to emit radiation until they are depleted. Depenting upon what element emitted the particles and the respective half-life, they could emit radiation for 1000s of years. Marie Curie’s body is still radioactive and she’s been dead since the 1800’s. The same can be said for many of the employees of the Radium Dial Company (Google it), many of which had to be burried in lead coffins.

    The lead vest isn’t practical but niether is Lukemia. I would strongly consider the respritory protection as well.

    Good luck.

    124 Posts

    Thanks for the info Bones.

    This detects all 3 but not sure it differentiates the source type when giving a reading.

    These radium jaws are a ghastly sight, did not know about that.

    Looks like some Milk & Spinach in Japan have now been detected with higher than acceptable levels…

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