Development of a miniature, low power, solid state, continuously sensitive, diffusion cloud chamber
Author(s)Cheney, Craig(Craig B.)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Mechanical Engineering.
Ian W. Hunter.
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A miniature, low-power, solid state, continuously sensitive, diffusion cloud chamber has been developed for use in educational settings as part of the MICA (Measurement, Instrumentation, Controls and Analysis) initiative. MICA aims to provide an immersive educational experience for a wide variety of subjects, through hands-on, experimentation based learning. Cloud chambers were first invented in the early 2 0 th century and offer the ability to visualize ionization tracks from high energy particles. Cloud chambers are no longer used for modern research purposes, but they present a unique and compelling opportunity for teaching physics, including classical mechanics, electricity & magnetism, and nuclear concepts. Presented is a compact cloud chamber with custom, integrated power electronics that dramatically reduces the size and power requirements over those of existing devices. The device is built using a modular block system that enables the rapid development and reusability of the electronics from one MICA experiment to the next. The thermal system utilizes heat pipes, and is optimized to not require the use of a liquid coolant. An onboard controller provides flexible operation, real-time control, and data acquisition. Using cloud chambers in an educational setting allows students to visualize physics and phenomena that are otherwise intangible and difficult to learn.
Thesis: Ph. D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Mechanical Engineering, 2020Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (pages 129-132).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Mechanical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology