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Re: [Phys-l] Sig figs


My supervisor asked me to (ca 1986) "create" an XRF station for a Mosley expt. After obtaining a prop. counter tube, I had my assistant make a stand for it to "try out". Except for the tube's support hole accurately cut, it was "frankly" ugly. My sup. came by while I was trying it out. He criticized it. I didn't have the presence to explain it was a prototype. Anyway, I took it to the wood shop for a beautiful copy. They called me after the wood work was done asking what paint (I think I specified glue, no metal) -- I had the presence to ask them to make some samples on scrap wood pieces. One had very detectable fluorescence. Which leads to a second ("off subject") story. When our Mössbauer source (Co-57) source was no longer useful, I asked the Rad. Safety Officer if I could use it for the XRF experiment. Yes, but I must cover it (IIRC -- still ~ 100 microCi). So I got out the silicone RTVR. At the last second I stopped! I tried fluorescing an epoxy set on a card before using it. It worked fine for at least a coupala years.

On 2010, Oct 17, , at 05:58, Joseph Bellina wrote:

He wanted to know what was important and what was not because
precision took time and money. If a rough cut would work, he would
do that, if I needed to a "thou" or better he would do that.