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Dr. Fabrizio Aumento
Subject: Re: RM Success
Some interesting news for you:
For the last few weeks we have been running several radon monitors in the cellar of that restaurant where we originally found high very values over one year ago. Amongst these is my last RM-70 with fan and HP200. The cellar is on the margins of the current earthquake zone. All instruments (Pylon, ENEA, etc, each costing US$ 10,000 and over) are recording the same trends, but the RM/HP combination is by far the most responsive and sensitive (as well as the smallest and cheapest). The only trouble I've had is that over this last weekend the values were so high that some of the peaks I recorded with the RM/HP had their tops truncated: this occurred at 22,500 mu-R/hr; is this the peak capacity of measurement? Well, RM/HP results were fantastic, and other researchers were stunned! Even more so when the Makdecay software showed that these peaks were laden with Rn-220 instead of only Rn-222 as in the past! The gases must be rushing out from below ground for Rn-220 to survive.
As a result, you'll be getting several orders by state institutions....
From: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: next week
The four stations in Terceira, Azores are providing great data: their positioning in key locations even shows the different radon responses depending on where the tremor took place. Absolutely fascinating. I'll try to convince the USAF to have me install more units.
Have a good weekend!
Our field use of the HP/RM combination is undergoing continuous
modifications and tests against other, much more expensive
instruments. Our unit in the famous restaurant's cellar, for
example, is packed in a sealed plastic box which contains the
HP200, a transformer, back-up 3V and 12V batteries, and the body
of the RM-70, with its window facing out through a hole of just
the right size cut out of the side of the box; the fan unit
screws onto the RM unit from the outside of the box via a special
ring we made up. So there's nothing exposed to the air except for
the window membrane and the fan. The HP can be left open within
the box, which is transparent, and can be read without opening
the box. It is working perfectly, whereas the other instruments
have had several "casualties" due to the extreme dampness of the
cellar. My colleagues are constantly having to go there to change
silica gel packs!
I will also be ordering a couple of RM 70s for use here, since the earthquake monitoring "game" is getting too interesting for words! On December 27th, for example, all instruments in our deep cellar measured a sudden drop in Rn from around 10,000 microroentgens/hr to almost zero (400 to 600), and stayed down there for a whole day, suddenly rising back to our high values. Never happened before: the inverse yes, with peaks up to 25,000 mr/hr and well over. Each instrument works on a different principle, and my RM/HP is battery backed-up, so power failure is not an explanation! Nor is tampering, since the cellar is absolutely safe.
All the other instruments in the cellar, which use tubes and pumps to bring air to their detector chambers (Lucas cells or what have you) did not see the short-lived thoron spikes during the earthquakes, whereas the RM+fan did (the MAKDECAY even showed that there was 12% Pb-212 during peaks, as compared to 0% normally).
... I have some very interesting news on your RM-80 I had positioned deep in the volcanic cave "Algar do Carvao" in Terceira, Azores. My colleague who looks after it once a month found that the lake level at the bottom of the cave had risen, exceeding all predictions, and that the RM-80 was 2 meters under water, and working! He had to dive down in the icy water to retrieve it, and reposition it much higher up. Upon reading the December file stored in the HP200, we saw that the RM had gone under water on the 25th Dec.! Underwater counts were only 10 mr/hr, but definitely working.
This means that not only the RM-80 is waterproof, but that the phone jack to it had been well siliconed, and could keep water out even when submerged!
(Note: A weather resist option is available for RM units. Contact Aware Electronics for more info.)
(Note: When one uses AW-GRAPH's zoom feature to zoom in on two dips
(blue curve (Oct.26th-27th) and magenta curve), one can see normal background plots,
during which time the Radon gathering aspect of the equipment was
removed from the RM-80).
To demonstrate: Notice the yellow "zoom" box on plot...
(Note: 3R Research is planning to use AW-FETCH software for remote monitoring of a cellar site with thick lava walls, hence the need to drill a hole for the telephone line. Dr. Fabrizio Aumento is a international volcanologist and geothermal expert. 3R offers consulting services to companies, international banks and governments. In one island of the Azores, for example, Fabrizio discovered one geothermal field, saw it through its development to a 12 MW power station. Now on Terceira, in conjunction with the European Commission, they are attempting to discover another field. The USAF wants geothermal power for their strategic air base, so hence their involvement: "being a volcanologist at heart, I persuaded them that they should monitor the volcano BEFORE any drilling or other interference, and compare long term data with AFTER development. Nobody has ever done the "before" part, always waiting for the "after", when it's too late to get original data for comparison!").