Heavy Elements in Surface Materials: Determination by Alpha Particle Scattering

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Science  13 Jul 1973:
Vol. 181, Issue 4095, pp. 156-158
DOI: 10.1126/science.181.4095.156


The backscattering of alpha particles from a radioactive source can be used to determine the amounts of heavy elements such as lead in surface materials. A light, portable instrument has been constructed that can be used as a survey meter for painted surfaces. It has a sensitivity of 0.3 percent by weight in a measurement of a few minutes.