Calorimetry measures the thermal energy released from a sample. It is applied in two areas:
- The measurement of plutonium in relatively large quantities (thermal energy is generated through alpha particle decay)
- The measurement of tritium in relatively large quantities (thermal energy is generated through beta particle decay)
Alpha and beta particles have a relatively short range inside the sample materials so the bulk of the energy released in the decay process is deposited locally in the sample. ANTECH calorimeters determine the rate of energy release by the samples through these decay processes.
Calorimeters are configured as single instruments, unlike gamma ray and neutron instruments in which the detector and counting electronics can be separated. The thermal element (or detector component) uses temperature sensitive materials such a nickel wire or thermocouples as a means of measuring temperature. It uses electrical heating elements as a means of depositing thermal energy for temperature control. The electronic coupling components are similar to electrical voltage and current measuring devices.
ANTECH employs two different calorimeter technologies: Isothermal calorimeters employ the power replacement method and achieving adequate measurement precision. Twin-cell heat-flow calorimeters are applied where high accuracy and precision measurement are required.
The design of the demountable CA503-260 High Sensitivity In-Line (Glove Box) Calorimeter is based around a sample well that maintains glove box integrity.
The ANTECH CHF400 Series Precision Twin Cell Sample Calorimeters feature a thermostatically controlled calorimeter body that houses two identical cylindrical or rectangular cells, one “sample” and one “reference”. Both cells have the same construction and the same heat transfer properties. The CHF400 Series are available in a variety of volume sizes.
The CHF610-0020 Small Sample Pre-heater is a portable desktop instrument designed to preheat two small cylindrical canisters containing samples of a Plutonium Containing Material (PCM) to a temperature similar to that of the thermal block control temperature of a CHF610-0020 Transportable Small Sample Calorimeter.