In this instructable, you will learn to build your own cloud chamber! This design utilizes peltier thermocoolers, a power supply, and CPU cooler instead of dry ice, to give consistent and remarkable results! The cost of building this reusable turn key cloud chamber is between $150-$200. To start, you'll need to gather materials.

Materials List and links:

8" x 16" x 1/2" piece of plywood http://www.lowes.com/pd/1-4-in-Common-Pine-Sanded-...

4'6" of corner moulding trim http://www.lowes.com/pd/EverTrue-96-in-Solid-Wood-...

Black spray paint http://www.lowes.com/pd/Valspar-Black-Fade-Resista...

4 - 1" adjustable feet screws http://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-1-1-16-in-Thre...

430 W power supply https://www.amazon.com/Continuous-Power-Warranty-...

V8 GTS CPU cooler https://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-Hyper-D92-Acc...

12709 peltier https://www.amazon.com/Yorktek-Tec1-12709-Thermoel...

12710 peltier https://www.amazon.com/TEC1-12710-Thermoelectric-C...

7g arctic silver thermal paste https://www.amazon.com/Arctic-Silver-AS5-3-5G-Ther...

100mm petri dish https://www.amazon.com/Sterile-Plastic-Petri-Dishe...

3" x 3" x 1/8" project panel http://www.homedepot.com/p/Project-Panels-FOAMULAR...

3/4" diameter black flex tubing http://www.homedepot.com/p/Gardner-Bender-Flex-Tub...

13" LED string lights https://www.amazon.com/Triangle-Bulbs-Waterproof-F...

2 - #6-32 x 2" machine screws http://www.lowes.com/pd/The-Hillman-Group-8-Count-...

2 - #4-1/2" self driving screws http://www.lowes.com/pd/The-Hillman-Group-14-Count...

3.5" square of chamois http://www.walmart.com/ip/Tanner-s-Select-Natural-...

1/4" diameter heat shrink http://www.lowes.com/pd/Gardner-Bender-8-Count-3-2...

2 -1.5" x 5/8" L brackets

2- #10-3/4" screws

Electrical tape http://www.lowes.com/pd/Scotch-66-ft-Electrical-Ta...

3D printed materials:

4 parts of this cloud chamber are pieces we printed using a 3D printer. If you have your own printer, feel free to copy the STL files found above and print on your own. Otherwise, email me25hage@siena.edu and we can ship you all the necessary 3D printed parts.



Drill bits sized 3/8" and 5/32"

Hammer or mallet


Wood glue


2-part plastic epoxy

Concrete cement


2.5mm allen key

Wire cutters/wire strippers

Masking tape

Solder/soldering equipment

Needle-nosed pliers(optional)

Step 1: Assembling the Base

To begin, use brown stain to completely coat your board and trim. Pick one large face of the board to be the top. This side should be the one with the best finish. Measure and mark a 1" border along each edge of the board. On the corners of the border, use a 3/8" drill bit to drill a hole directly down, from top to bottom.

Flip over your board and hammer in adjustable wedges. Screw in feet.

Lay your base flat on the table and arrange the 4 pieces of trim around the base. Use wood glue to attach the trim and hold in place using large clips.

<p>Great cloud chamber!</p>
Nice job!<br>I have a question, what is the temperature measurement inside the chamber?
<p>It gets colder than my IR thermometer can read, but that can measure down to -20 degrees Celsius</p>
Wow that's impressive.
<p>Very cool! Any video of it working?</p>
<p>Just added the video!</p>
<p>Thanks! That's really cool!</p>
<p>Awesome! I love it when people make their own DIY lab equipment.</p>
<p>Thanks! It was an awesome summer project I took on as a researcher at Siena College! They're great for many classes at many levels!</p>
<p>Nice work Maddy, I'll be making this next week.</p><p>kk</p>
<p>Great to hear! Let me know if you have any questions or improvement ideas! We love to get feedback!</p>

About This Instructable




More by MaddyHagen:Cloud Chamber Particle Detector 
Add instructable to: