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Thulium Applications

Applications

Thulium-170 is synthesized in nuclear reactors exposing natural thulium to neutron radiation. This isotope with half-life 129 days emits relatively soft gamma-rays with energy 84 keV. On its basis advanced X-rays penetrating devices were created. In difference with the traditional X-rays devices these ones do not need power supply; they are portable, light-weight and more simple. Miniature thulium apparatus may be used in areas inaccessible for regular devices. Thulium gamma-ray flow detectors are very convenient for radiographic inspection of thin walled components and welded joints. Working with samples with thickness less than 6 mm these devices are more sensitive. Using thulium-170 the inscriptions on the bronze plate of ancient Assyrian helmet became legible.

Thulium-170 is used also in hazemeters (Opacimeter) for suspended particles measurements. Thullium devices are reliable, fast and compact. The short half-time is their main disadvantage.

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