Gamma spectroscopy

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Gamma spectroscopy is a radiochemistry measurement method that determines the energy and count rate of gamma rays emitted by radioactive substances.

Gamma spectroscopy is an extremely important measurement. A detailed analysis of the gamma ray energy spectrum is used to determine the identity and quantity of gamma emitters present in a material. The equipment used in gamma spectroscopy includes a particle detector, a pulse sorter (multichannel analyzer), and associated amplifiers and data readout devices. The detector is often a sodium iodide (NaI) scintillation counter or a high purity germanium detector.

High resolution gamma spectroscopy often utilizes Compton suppression.

For example in the Alexander Litvinenko case several different different isotopes could have been suspected. In the graph below the gamma spectra (photon energy in keV against intensity) for three isotopes (thallium-201, thallium-202 and polonium-210).

Image:Gammaspectrscopy.png
Intensity against photon energy for three isotopes

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Gamma spectroscopy

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