Experimental Modern and Quantum Physics for Do-It-Yourself Science Enthusiasts 

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EG&G SPCM-AQR-13-FC Single Photon Counting Module on eBay (no relation to seller)

I HAVE NO RELATION TO SELLER – Just passing along in case someone is interested. eBay item number 271206242864: “The EG&G (or Perkin Elmer) SPCM-AQR is a self-contained module which detects single photons of light over the wavelength range from 400 nm to 1060 nm and sensitivity which often outperforms PMTs. The option 13-FC indicates

 
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Original Source for Flyback Driver Hack?

One of my all-time favorite circuits is the the following DC-to-AC inverter (click diagram to enlarge) based on an old color TV flyback:

 
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Fair Sampling Loophole Closed for Test of Violation of Bell’s Inequality

  A very interesting article by Bernhard Wittmann, Sven Ramelow, Fabian Steinlechner, Nathan K Langford, Nicolas Brunner, Howard M Wiseman, Rupert Ursin,and Anton Zeilinger, entitled “Loophole-free Einstein–Podolsky–Rosen experiment via quantum steering” appeared in the Nature’s New Journal of Physics, Volume 14, May 2012. This paper describes a Bell’s Inequality Violation experiment in which the “fair sampling”

 
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Loved the Book “How the Hippies Saved Physics” by David Kaiser

I just finished the book ”How the Hippies Saved Physics” by David Kaiser and absolutely loved! The book was fun and immensely educational regarding the seemingly unlikely seed of modern-day quantum information theory.  I must confess that when I first saw the book on the shelf at my local Barnes & Noble I dismissed it as yet another

 
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Air to Ground Quantum Key Distribution Achieved

From Phys.org: “A team of German physicists has successfully demonstrated an ability to perform quantum key distribution (QKD) exchange between an airplane in flight and a ground station, paving the way perhaps to the same kinds of communications between satellites and ground stations which could lead to a global quantum based secure communications network. The

 
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Using Surplus Photonis XP2422/SN PMTs in Scintillation Probes

We prepared a short note on how to build a dynode voltage divider network for inexpensive surplus XP2422/SN photomultiplier tubes.  The XP2422/SN PMT is especially suited for gamma-ray spectral analysis when coupled to a NaI(Tl) scintillation crystal because of its high pulse-height resolution (PHR).  The XP2422/SN is available from Sphere Research in Canada.

 
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Schematics for Fast Pulse Amplifier for Macroscopic Entanglement Detection

A recent paper entitled ”Displacing entanglement back and forth between the micro and macro domains” discusses the experimental possibility of displacing quantum entanglement into the domain where it involves two macroscopically distinct states, i.e. two states characterized by a large enough number of photons.  Specifically, the authors describe the process by which they start with two entangled spatially separated

 
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In Memoriam – Dr. Akira Tonomura (1942-2012)

We recently learned the sad news that Dr. Akira Tonomura - a truly great experimentalist – passed away on May 2, 2012 during the course of treatment on pancreatic cancer. We have been great admirers of Dr. Tonomura.  Our blog’s banner is a cartoon representation of an experimental setup developed by Dr. Tonomura, through which in 1986 he

 
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diy Scintillation Probe for Ludlum Ratemeters Using Surplus XP3312/SQ PMT

  Ludlum general-purpose ratemeters are professional-grade instruments that are available on the secondary market at affordable prices.  They are compatible with a wide variety of probes, making them a great choice for educators, surveyors, and advanced amateur users.  However, probes for Ludlum ratemeters are often as expensive as the meter instrument itself, making it worthwhile

 
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80 µCi Americium-241 Sources Inside Old Pyrotronics F3/5A Smoke Detectors

These are pictures of the Americium-241 sources inside some old Pyrotronics F3/5A smoke detectors that were being decommissioned.  The activity of the Am-241 sources at the time of manufacture (1970s) totaled  80 µCi, so they should still have some ~70 µCi left in them. The Pyrotronics F3/5A smoke detectors were manufactured in the early 1970s. The

 
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A Low-Cost, Super-Sensitive Paint Can Scintillation Probe for the Prutchi CDV700-Pro

  We just finished constructing a low-cost, yet highly sensitive gamma-ray scintillation probe for our CDV700-Pro counter.  The probe is based on a Philips XP5312/SN photomultiplier tube (that is available from Sphere Research) and a piece of scintillation plastic.  The probe yields a background count of approximately 1,000 counts/minute (cpm) in our lab, and 7,400 cpm

 
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New Book by Prof. Mark Beck – Great Complement to Our diy Quantum Physics Book!

Prof. Mark Beck from the Dept. of Physics at Whitman College recently published an excellent book titled “Quantum Mechanics: Theory and Experiment.”  It is written for an advanced undergraduate/graduate quantum mechanics class.  This book presents the theory in its full formalism (with thorough, high-level math), as well as describes five laboratory experiments that explore the use of entangled photons in the

 
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Using the $79 SainSmart DSO201 Pocket Oscilloscope and GammaGrapher with the PMT/Scintillation Probe

Connects directly to PMT probe shown in the book’s Figure 30 with no need for PMT amplifier!   The nice guys at the Yahoo GammaSpectrometry Group developed multichannel analyzer software for the $79 SainSmart DSO201 Pocket-Sized Digital Oscilloscope.  The upload of the MCA software to the oscilloscope is really easy (via USB), and it allows the PMT probe shown in

 
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A Low-Cost X-Band Generator for Microwave Optics Experiments

Gunnplexers are becoming scarce in the surplus market, but X-band motion detection is very much alive.  X-band detection modules are available for OEM applications, and fortunatelly, Parallax has a unit based on this module available for $34.99.

 
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diy Quantum Physics on MAKE Magazine (Volume 31)

diy Quantum Physics was featured in Make Magazine, Volume 31:  Punk Science (page 76).

 
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