Frequently asked questions
This depends on the cycle time you select. The memory holds 12.800 data points. If you are monitoring on the shortest cycle time of one minute the probe has capacity for 8.8 days of detailed measurements, so you might want to set up a procedure for weekly downloading of the data. Alternatively, at the longest cycle time of 2 hours, you will have nearly 3 years of data available!
You can choose cycle times of 1, 2, 5, 10, 15, 30, 60 and 120 minutes. The selected cycle time is stored in the probe via the.
Yes. The DataEXPERT software allows you to set a dose rate threshold, below which you can select a long cycle time and above which you can select a shorter cycle time. So when you download the data you can view the events of interest in more detail.
GammaTRACER has a wrap-around memory, so it will start to over-write the earliest data as soon as it is full.
With the standard probe you can change between the following quantities/units/values:
If you need to measure the ambient dose equivalent rate H*(10), simply specify this at the time of ordering. The probe will be supplied to you configured exclusively for this quantity.
No problem. By component selection the performance of the standard probe can be extended to cover the range -40°C to +60°C. However, since the GM tubes and other components are under more stress at extremes of temperature, it is only possible to warranty this probe for 1 year.
Yes. Instead of supplying the GammaTRACER probe with two identical GM tubes, Saphymo will exchange one of them for a tube covering a higher dose rate range. In this way the total range of the probe will extend from 20 nSv/h to 10 Sv/h. Again, due to the fact that GM tubes draw more current at higher dose rates, it is only possible to offer a 1 year warranty for the extended range probe.
The batteries are guaranteed for 3 years and will typically last 5 years at normal background levels, so you will not need to change them for (at least) this period.
The battery capacity is continuously monitored by the probe electronics and you can view the current age and anticipated future lifetime of the batteries via the GammaVIEW software. If batteries get to within 180 days of depletion all data will automatically be saved and you will receive a warning of this when you download data.
Customers with only a few probes will need to return them to the supplier to have new batteries fitted. However, in the case of large scale users, training may be provided to allow this to be done on site. Note that the probe is hermetically sealed, so in normal circumstances it should not be opened.
GammaTRACER has a built-in Quality Assurance system which continuously checks and compares the two GM detectors, to ensure that they are consistent, and verifies other operating parameters. Any irregularity is logged in the probe's memory and flagged by a marker in the displayed data, once this is downloaded. The nature of the irregularity can then be investigated by the user. Examples of situations which will be "flagged" in this manner include:
Yes. For annual recalibration you just need a small 137 Cs source of 3.7 MBq to verify the calibration factor. The probe calibration should not drift but if necessary you can enter new calibration values via the DataGATE.
The new powerful visualization software DataEXPERT with integration of database functionality runs on AT-compatible PCs and has following system requirements:
The infra-red transceiver operates over at least 12 meters range. For other methods of downloading data, see next page.
Infrared transmission operates roughly over the line of sight, so you need to position the IR transceiver at a point within +/- 10° of the axis of the GammaTRACER probe. For field use a handy accessory is a simple camera tripod, onto which you can attach the DataGATE.
You can do this. The date and time of the last data transfer is always logged and DataEXPERT allows you to choose to download only the new values recorded since that time. Alternatively, you can download the values over a fixed time period or a fixed number of values. Of course, you can always download the full archive at any time.
With the DataEXPERT database and software package you can administrate the data, analyze, graphically present them and document selected measuring series. In detail you can:
You can choose to print the contents of a data chart. Alternatively, the data can be printed in tabular format.
DataEXPERT allows you to export the data easily to Excel or SQL databases. The chart can be exported into a file or on the clipboard in different formats: as Bitmap (bmp), Metafile (wmf), Enhanced Metafile (emf), TEE (tee) or as JPEG (jpg).
Yes. For users wishing to combine a number of probe units into a complete monitoring network, GammaTRACER can be supplied with an integral RS485/RS232 module. The additional module requires an external 12V DC power supply. This enables the user to download data into a PC either via hardwired connection (maximum length 1,000 meters) or using a modem link to a telecommunications system.
The DataGATE -ONLINE- embedded Web Server serves as an interface unit between GammaTRACER RS-232 and the TCP/IP interface. Locally supplied routers and modems (also GSM) can be supplied and installed by a local IT specialist. With this configuration the user is independent of any changing requirements for PC hardware/operating systems. With the DataGATE device he can easily integrate into complete networks and access data from any computer.
For such a wire-bound network configuration we now offer all the sophisticated software modules which are used with a radio based SkyLINK system.
I would like to transmit the data via radio link. Is this possible with your probes?
Yes, the GammaTRACER probes can be equipped with a radio module, the transmitter. Depending on the measurement task we offer two radio solutions, ShortLINK and SkyLINK, both operating as a proprietary network. ShortLINK is a bi-directional radio link designed to cover a range up to 5 km line of sight. SkyLINK is a unidirectional wide-area data collection network with highly sophisticated receiver technology, covering ranges between typically 30-100 km. Both are designed for connecting low-power sensors. A complete system consists of an antenna, the receiver and organizer unit. Both of these wireless approaches have really unique features. One system can cover tasks in routine surveillance as well as for emergency preparedness. You can use it for perimeter monitoring as well as for wide range data collection. ShortLINK can also be applied for instrument parametrization.
How can I find out if a ShortLINK or a SkyLINK approach is suited for my purposes?
To judge on this question we need to know more on your measurement project. We have prepared a separate brochure with 'Frequently asked questions' and a questionnaire to get to know the basic ideas on your intended set-up. There are many advantages with a ShortLINK or SkyLINK system in comparison to other radio solutions. Have a first look on our website to get a glimpse on the system outlines (www.saphymo.de) and contact us with your project details. We will find the best suited solution for your measurement project.
What kind of after-sales support do you offer?
Besides the technical advantages our products are regularly known as user-friendly, easy to handle and practically maintenance-free. Should you nevertheless have any initial problem to get started contact your distributor or send us a short e-mail, fax or just give us a call indicating your problem clearly. We may also return your call and will try to get you out of this situation as fast as possible.
If you wish to learn a bit more on the system and to make best use of the functions and the software we offer a training course on request.
Beyond measuring the ambient dose rate it may be important to perform additional measurement functions. In order to identify the cause of an increase of the ambient dose rate as the result of air-borne or deposited activity or to selectively record inert gases as indicators of volatile radioactive nuclides such as iodine. For these particular tasks the following two special versions have been designed. In case of further interest please ask for a separate leaflet on these specially configured versions.
The GammaTRACER special model Separator features a lead separator between the two special counter channels. Therewith this model allows measuring by the lower channel the dose rate of deposits in the ground, while the upper detector "sees" the air-borne activity. Thus, by comparing the two independent courses of the ambient dose rate values the user is able to determine the source of fluctuations in the ambient dose rate.
Xenon - Energy Differentiator
The GammaTRACER special model Xenon is equipped with special, differently filtered detectors. A comparison of the two counter channels can thus indicate whether an increase in the dose rate is the result of the presence of Xe-133 or not. By determining this way the radioactive nuclide Xe-133 important early warning information after reactor accidents is available.
Saphymo is currently developing a Universal Telemetry Platform (UTP). On this basis it will be possible to extend the applications of the radio network with other kinds of sensors for example for meteorological data.
'Innovation and personal engagement'. Since more than 20 years this motto has been valid for Saphymo GmbH, based in Frankfurt, Germany. The company was founded in 1980 by Volker Genrich (Genitron Instruments). Based on long term experience with the French Saphymo company Genitron Instruments has joined forces with Saphymo, Massy, since October 2002. This enables the companies of the Saphymo group to make better use of the existing technological potential.
Over the years, Saphymo has become a specialist supplier of radiometric instrumentation for environmental monitoring. A number of innovative dose rate monitors and monitoring systems have been developed. The company has been on the cutting edge of technology and is known for its high quality of its products. Its philosophy is to add value to these by offering its customers besides a long warranty period practically maintenance-free operation of the instruments and systems. Saphymo also manufactures the AlphaGUARD Radon Monitor, which has achieved outstanding success since its launch and is now firmly established as the world leading device in its field.
For more information contact us directly in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, or your local distributor of which we will supply the address on request. We are looking forward to get in touch with you!
SAPHYMO GmbH, Heerstraße 149, D-60488 Frankfurt a.M.,