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With respect to our spaceship analogy used in the previous chapter the atomic number can be thought of as the size of individual meteors in the meteor cloud. If we were to precisely control our experimental set-up and carefully analyse our results we would find that: Therefore if we were to double the atomic number of our absorber we would increase the attenuation by a factor of two cubed, that is 8, if we were to triple the atomic number we would increase the attenuation by a factor of 27, that is three cubed, and so on.

Region F Here Vdc is high enough for the gas to completely breakdown and it cannot be used to detect radiation. • We will now consider features of the Ionisation Chamber and the Geiger Counter in more detail. Ionisation Chamber The ionisation chamber consists of a gas-filled detector energised by a relatively low dc voltage. We will first of all make an estimate of the voltage pulse height generated by this type of detector. We 58 | Basic Physics of Nuclear Medicine Gas-Filled Radiation Detectors will then consider some applications of ionisation chambers.

Before we start though you might find an analogy useful to help you with your thinking. This analogy works on the basis of thinking about matter as an enormous mass of atoms (that is nuclei with orbiting electrons) and that the radiation is a particle/photon passing through this type of environment. So the analogy to think about is a spaceship passing through a meteor storm like you might see in a science-fiction movie where the spaceship represents the radiation and the meteors represent the atoms of the material through which the radiation is passing.

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