A gamma ray photon has a discreet energy that is characteristic of its source isotope. By precisely measuring the energy of gamma rays we can determine their source. Potassium-40, uranium-238 and thorium-232 are of primordial origin and are the only natural radioisotopes suitable for gamma ray spectrometry. This module describes the sources of gamma radiation and properties of their spectra, discuss several aspects of detectors, explore some physical models, and then talk about environmental effects.
After completing this module, participants will come to understand:
- The sources of gamma radiation and properties of their spectra,
- Discuss several aspects of detectors,
- Explore some physical models, and
- Discuss environmental effects.