- an apparatus for determining the movements of charged particles, consisting of a chamber containing a supersaturated mixture of gas and vapor, the vapor condensing around ions created by the particle in its passing, thereby revealing the path of the particle. Also called expansion chamber, Wilson cloud chamber. Cf. bubble chamber.[1895-1900]
* * *Radiation detector developed by C.T.R. Wilson.Its detecting medium is a supersaturated vapour (see saturation) that condenses around ions produced by the passage of energetic charged particles, such as alpha particles, beta particles, or protons. In a Wilson cloud chamber, supersaturation is caused by the cooling induced by a sudden expansion of the saturated vapour by the motion of a piston or an elastic membrane. In a diffusion chamber, the saturated vapour is cooled to supersaturation as it diffuses into a region kept cold by a coolant such as solid carbon dioxide or liquid helium.
* * *radiation detector, originally developed between 1896 and 1912 by the Scottish physicist C.T.R. Wilson (Wilson, C.T.R.), that has as the detecting medium a supersaturated vapour that condenses to tiny liquid droplets around ions produced by the passage of energetic charged particles, such as alpha particles, beta particles, or protons. In a Wilson cloud chamber, supersaturation is caused by the cooling induced by a sudden expansion of the saturated vapour by the motion of a piston or an elastic membrane, a process that must be repeated with each use.In a diffusion chamber, a simpler and continuously sensitive cloud chamber, the saturated vapour is cooled to supersaturation as it diffuses into a region kept cold by a coolant such as solid carbon dioxide or liquid helium.
* * *
Look at other dictionaries:
Cloud chamber — with visible tracks from ionizing radiation (short, thick: α particles; long, thin: β particles). See also Animated Version Video of a Cloud chamber in action The cloud chamber, a … Wikipedia
cloud chamber — n. an enclosed chamber supersaturated with a liquid vapor, for revealing the presence of ionizing particles that cause liquid droplets to form … English World dictionary
cloud chamber — /ˈklaʊd tʃeɪmbə/ (say klowd chaymbuh) noun Physics an instrument for making the tracks of ionising particles visible as a row of droplets which condense from a saturated vapour. Also, Wilson cloud chamber … Australian English dictionary
cloud chamber — noun apparatus that detects the path of high energy particles passing through a supersaturated vapor; each particle ionizes molecules along its path and small droplets condense on them to produce a visible track • Syn: ↑Wilson cloud chamber •… … Useful english dictionary
cloud chamber — cloud′ cham ber n. phs an apparatus containing a mixture of gas and vapor in which visible tracks of ions reveal the paths of charged particles through the mixture • Etymology: 1895–1900 … From formal English to slang
cloud chamber — noun Date: 1897 a vessel containing air saturated with water vapor whose sudden expansion reveals the passage of an ionizing particle by a trail of visible droplets … New Collegiate Dictionary
cloud chamber — noun Physics an apparatus in which the tracks of ionizing particles are visible as condensation trails in gas supersaturated with water or other vapour … English new terms dictionary
Cloud Chamber (album) — Cloud Chamber Studio album by Boris with Michio Kurihara Released … Wikipedia
Cloud Chamber for the Trees and Sky — is an outdoor exhibit by Chris Drury located in the museum park of the North Carolina Museum of Art. The chamber itself is a round building built of stone, wood, and turf with a single door to admit the viewer. It is light tight when its door is… … Wikipedia
cloud chamber effect — See condensation cloud … Military dictionary