36 points by kasbah
a month ago
I’m really glad to see how it’s getting easier to distribute work like this, from easy pcb ordering to 1-click bom ordering.
I’m also interested in the gradual adoption of and categorisation of the properties for using photodiode based scintillation detecting methods. Much less fragile than a glass tube, lower voltages, etc.
Nice to hear. I'm the creator of Kitspace.org and I've spent a lot of time making the 1-click ordering work. It's an open source platform by the way: https://github.com/kitspace
I'm far from an expert on this subject and am not sure if it fits the definition of "scintillation", but here's another particle detector that uses photodiodes:
- electron-detector: https://kitspace.org/boards/github.com/ozel/diy_particle_det...
- alpha-spectrometer: https://kitspace.org/boards/github.com/ozel/diy_particle_det...
Very nice! Sorry for my inexperience but how would you proceed as a beginner to build one of these projects?
I understand you can buy the components from Digikey but you have to print a PCB with those components, right?
So it's the PCB printer that should have access to the components, no?
PCB manufacturers accept a format called "Gerber" files. They are basically drawings of all the layers of the PCB. You can download the Gerber files from the Kitspace page and send/upload them to a manufacturer of choice or even use one of the links to auto-upload them for you to Aisler, OSHPark, PCBWay or JLCPB.
Since the PCB is the board only, component information is actually not required to manufacture it. If you want a functioning device however you do have to source the components (e.g. from Digikey) and solder them to the PCB. I would recommend starting with an easier circuit (the electron-detector above might be a good candidate!) and ideally find someone to teach and help you (maybe at a local hackerspace? youtube tutorials might get you there if not?)
There's also this popular comic for teaching soldering to beginners that might help: https://mightyohm.com/blog/2011/04/soldering-is-easy-comic-b.... More links like this can be found on our list: https://github.com/kitspace/awesome-electronics/
The other option is to have a manufacturer solder it for you (e.g. Aisler and JLCPCB will do this for you), but if you have no experience building and debugging electronics I wouldn't recommend it (since it can get expensive and you can easily end up with a non-functioning device).
I'd be interested in how the calibration works, you need known samples for the energy and not all of them are easy to get.
This is the great thing about wider exploration of these technologies, the calibration data (modulo the individual per chip variability) can be crowdsourced across the combinations of samples and detectors by the entire user base.
I don't have the electronics chops to build one of these, but I'd certainly buy one.