We are pleased to announce that Ludlum Measurements, Inc. successfully completed a series of audits and reviews by ABS-Quality Evaluations, and has thereby been registered to ISO 9001:2008 certification (Registration Certificate No. 50745).
Radioactivity stirs primal fears in many people, but Geoff Watts argues that an undue sense of its risks can cause real harm.
Bad Gastein in the Austrian Alps. It’s 10am on a Wednesday in early March, cold and snowy – but not in the entrance to the main gallery of what was once a gold mine. Togged out in swimming trunks, flip-flops and a bath robe, I have just squeezed into one of the carriages of a narrow-gauge railway that’s about to carry me 2 km into the heart of the Radhausberg mountain.
Fifteen minutes later we’re there and I’m ready to enjoy what the brochures insist will be a health-enhancing environment. Enjoyment, of course, is a subjective term. The temperature inside the mountain’s dimly lit tunnels is around 40°C, and the humidity is 100 per cent. The sweat’s already begun to flow. More important, I’m breathing an atmosphere rich in radon.
Hang on… radon? That’s a radioactive gas. Yet here I am, without so much as a film badge dosimeter, never mind the protection of a lead apron, among a group of people who have paid to come to the Gasteiner Heilstollen (“healing galleries”) and willingly, even eagerly, undergo gruelling sessions in physical discomfort because of a much-contested theory that small doses of radiation are not just harmless, but act as a stimulant to good health.
Our view of radiation and its risks and benefits is complicated and mostly – the delights of the Heilstollen notwithstanding – negative. We are all aware of the effects of a nuclear weapon, the Armageddon scenario of a nuclear winter, cancers and birth defects caused by high doses of radiation and the like. Images of mushroom clouds have struck fear into our hearts since the 1940s, but it is what we can’t see in those pictures that scares us the most.
We are pleased to announce that one of our Ludlum Measurements, Inc. instruments guest starred in a recent episode of A&E’s “Storage Wars” reality program. The Model 177 Benchtop Counter, equipped with two external detectors, was discovered amid the jumbled boxes of random goods from a California storage unit. Because the rent for the unit had been left unpaid for 3 months, the contents were auctioned off in a single-lot, cash-only sale, as permitted by California law. The show continues with the purchaser reviewing the heretofore uninspected contents, estimating approximate dollar values for the individual items, and calculating the projected profits from their eventual resale. The Storage Wars’ season 7, episode 12, titled “High Stakes and Low Blows” showed Mr. Ivy Calvin outbidding the competition and winning one such auction.
Industrial radiography is the practice of using X-ray and gamma radiation to “see” defects or irregularities inside solid materials without requiring that the objects be removed, disassembled, or otherwise compromised for ongoing use should they pass inspection. The practice is becoming more widespread worldwide for its advantages both in terms of its economic benefits and versatility. Outlay for equipment for industrial radiography is significantly less, without compromising quality, than with other methods. In addition, this practice falls in the category of non-destructive testing. In other words, the materials may be thoroughly examined inside and out for fractures, weld quality, stress injury, or other issues without loss of integrity either in the items or in the findings.
March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb according to the proverb. But what does the month of April offer us? April 15th is Tax Day in the United States, the deadline for filing income tax returns to the federal government. Other April observances celebrate foods such as pecans, garlic, cheeseballs, and caramel popcorn. More globally-oriented topics are Russian cosmonauts, fun at work day, and world health. Some observances are month-long, including national poetry and poetry writing, jazz appreciation, Arab-American heritage, and stress awareness. In our industry we naturally pay special attention to April being designated National Records and Information Management Month.
The Model 3030P offers independent, simultaneous LCD readouts of alpha/beta counting. Unit electronics support background subtraction, crosstalk correction, separate alarms, and cpm/dpm operating modes. Other convenient properties, driven by computer chips, of the Model 3030P include a Quality Control (QC) process that monitors current date and time, and uses that data to alert the operator that it is time to repeat a daily QC check of the system.
Ludlum Measurements, Inc is attending the 59th Annual Meeting of the Health Physics Society in Baltimore Maryland, July 13 through the 17, 2014. Stop by Booth 400 to visit, ask questions, see a selection of our instruments, and enter a drawing to win the new Model 3000 Digital Survey Meter!* (some conditions apply, see below)