[ RadSafe ] Cell phone automatic radiation detection

Ernesto Faillace ernesto.faillace at gmail.com
Tue Feb 5 10:02:46 CST 2008

That make a lot more sense (using the phone as a signal
detector/transmitter), but also might diminish this tool as one that cannot
be used directly by the individual carrying it, perhaps to change his/her
behavior based on some alarm setting, unless there is feedback from the
central processor to the field unit.  I also assume that there would have to
be some data plan associated with such a phone's regular data tranmissions,
and not all cell phone users subscribe to such plans or are willing to pay
for the much higher rates associated with data transmissions outside
unlimited use plans.  Perhaps these costs could be paid to the phone company
by the authority collecting and processing the data, and maybe even the
additional cost of a phone with an optional detector could be subsidized.

Considering how cell phone networks were overloaded during 9-11, I also have
to wonder how robust this system would be in an actual emergency, although
perhaps the data transmission functions of the cell phone are less impacted
than voice connections, or perhaps there could be some emergency
prioritization of field data transmissions.  In any case, the most useful
application for such a system would be to catch a potential event prior to
its escalation into a full-blown emergency.  It also might be useful
(assuming the data networks hold up) to collect data used for real time
mapping of plume dispersion and deposition following an event, but the
ethics of not notifying the phone user of elevated radiation levels detected
by the phone would certainly be questionable.

On Feb 5, 2008 10:33 AM, Geo>K0FF <GEOelectronics at netscape.com> wrote:

> "color me
> > skeptical that such discrimination can be built into such a small size
> > detector at a reasonabl price..."
> Such systems will rely on central processing of the data gathered by the
> field units. Today there are many detectors of small size to choose from,
> the Si diodes,  the CsI crystal on a photocell being quite popular and
> sensitive, but the so called micro-PMT photomultiplier tube with a NaI(Tl)
> crystal is available for stringent spectrum analysis.
> The field operative receives readout of gross radiation information,
> perhaps
> crude but effective spectrum data ( in the High/Low Energy format), but
> the
> raw data is going to be processed and decisions will be made at a central
> office.
> Listmembers are probably aware of the network of fixed radiation detectors
> in the areas surrounding the Nevada Test Site, and other such government
> run
> networks. They may not be as a ware of grass roots efforts by amateur
> enthusiasts who use the internet to link their BlackCat Systems computer
> controller Geiger Counters to a national network.
> George Dowell
> New London Nucleonic Labs

More information about the RadSafe mailing list