Description: In the 1950s, the need for an accurately reproducible, real-time gamma calibration facility at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) was met with a manually operated radium source housed in a calibration well. This arrangement was quite satisfactory in the early days but was not able to keep pace with the increasing number of instruments necessary to support an expanding health physics program. Consequently, the hand crank was replaced by an electric motor in the early 1960s. This improvement made it possible to move the source at speeds up to 7 cm/s, resulting in a major increase in efficiency. This configuration served reliably for two decades but, by the 1980s, component aging and the growing scarcity of replacement parts led to the development of a third-generation source controller. The electric motor and vacuum-tube-driven power supply were replaced with a solid state power supply and a stepper motor interfaced to a microcomputer. The software written to operate the system is menu-driven, user-friendly, and provides the greatest flexibility and ease of use while minimizing learning time. The development and use of this control system will be discussed.
Date: January 1, 1986
Creator: Halliburton, R.E.
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Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department