Equipment |Liquid Scintillation Counters

Liquid Scintillation Counters

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Liquid scintillation counting (LSC) is a common laboratory technique used to measure the radioactivity of low energy radioisotopes, primarily beta-emitting and alpha-emitting isotopes. The detection technique calls for specific liquid media to convert radioactivity into detectable light pulses.

To be able to convert radioactivity into light, test media must include two basic components: an aromatic, organic solvent and scintillators. Some media also include surfactants.

The energy released by a radioactive test sample excites aromatic solvent molecules, which transfer the energy to the scintillators, also sometimes called "phosphors" or "fluors". The energy taken in through the scintillators generates excited states of the electrons, which decay to the ground state and generate a light pulse endemic to a particular scintillator. The light is then picked up by the photomultiplier tube (PMT).