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3.14.by forum • Homemade beta decay reactor ideas?
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Homemade beta decay reactor ideas?

Posted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 12:57 pm
by conundrum
Hi all.

Had a look at the tritium light source based reactor.

A couple of ideas for improvement.

1) Use an infrared LED (large area die) salvaged from an old camcorder illuminator instead of the solar cell.

2) Don't use a supercapacitor. These tend to be very "leaky", better to use something like a ceramic capacitor as they can be obtained in values of 100uF or more.

3) Use a circuit based on a low power switchmode oscillator like a JFET pair, tunnel diode etc.
These can operate on very low voltages down to 0.3V
I once had one of these based on a 2N3819/Ph3820 pair working on under 1 volt and lighting a white LED with under 200uA draw.

Kind regards, -A

Re: Homemade beta decay reactor ideas?

Posted: Mon Sep 19, 2011 6:57 pm
by BarsMonster
conundrum wrote:Hi all.

Had a look at the tritium light source based reactor.

A couple of ideas for improvement.

1) Use an infrared LED (large area die) salvaged from an old camcorder illuminator instead of the solar cell.

2) Don't use a supercapacitor. These tend to be very "leaky", better to use something like a ceramic capacitor as they can be obtained in values of 100uF or more.

3) Use a circuit based on a low power switchmode oscillator like a JFET pair, tunnel diode etc.
These can operate on very low voltages down to 0.3V
I once had one of these based on a 2N3819/Ph3820 pair working on under 1 volt and lighting a white LED with under 200uA draw.

Kind regards, -A
I can only argue about #1.

Anyway, this article was a 1st of April joke, hope you enjoyed it. :crazy:

Re: Homemade beta decay reactor ideas?

Posted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 8:25 pm
by xperroni
BarsMonster wrote:Anyway, this article was a 1st of April joke, hope you enjoyed it. :crazy:
Well, joke or not, I was intrigued by this idea of homemade nuclear-powered electronics. Those tritium capsules have got quite hard to find recently, but I've managed to order one from a Chinese online shop. When it arrives, I'll see if I can pair it to a set of electric motor and solar panel I have lying around, from a toy robot I bought last year and never assembled.

I have no electronics background whatsoever, but I wonder how hard would be to extend this project into something more flashy? I wonder if it would be possible to use the solar panel to power a battery, and then use the battery's power to drive a simplistic bot – just a PIC, a motor and a light sensor perhaps?

Re: Homemade beta decay reactor ideas?

Posted: Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:46 am
by BarsMonster
xperroni wrote:
BarsMonster wrote:Anyway, this article was a 1st of April joke, hope you enjoyed it. :crazy:
I have no electronics background whatsoever, but I wonder how hard would be to extend this project into something more flashy? I wonder if it would be possible to use the solar panel to power a battery, and then use the battery's power to drive a simplistic bot – just a PIC, a motor and a light sensor perhaps?
You need much larger capsules. Waaaaaay larger. Or like 100 of small ones to make detectable amount of energy.
You will not be able to power a robot of it. Maybe just low-power microcontroller and a led, which would flash once in 30 minutes.