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A cloud chamber simply lets you see traces of ionizing radioation such as alpha and beta particles. What happens in the chamber is that at the bottom the peltiers cool down to at least -18f or below, to supersaturate 99% isopropanyl alcohol. When charged particles pass thru the supersaturated mist of alcohol at the bottom of the chamber, the air gets ionized and the alcohol almost instantly condense and forms small visible tracks. That's pretty much it, you can find further information at Google!!

This is a piece a Fiestaware saucer in my chamber.

Step 1: Gather Materials

Picture of Gather Materials
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Here´s a list of what I bought for my final version of the chamber. This is the part where you have to decide how much money you want to spend. Cheap TECs from China may fail to function after a short while of usage. I bought a whole bunch of different TECs from both China and HK and so far I havent encountered any problems. But if you are buing cheap ones, you might aswell buy a couple of them to have as a backup. The watercooling system costs alot, in sweden about 100 $. I choosed this one because I wanted to have a stable cooling solution at higher temperatures (I tried to run the chamber with both 2, 3 and 4 TECs with as high wattage of heat as 500 with no results at all) You definetly dont need watercooling when you stack 2 peltiers but I found it easier and way more fun to do it :-) There are very succesful builds out there using 4 aircooled TECs so go with whatever you feel is right.

Electrical components:

1 pcs TEC 12709 (Bottom) Found at eBay
1 pcs TEC 12706 (top) Found at eBay
Switched powersupply 12V, 200W, 17A (To run the 12709 TEC, fans and the Corsair H60) Found at eBay
Switched powersupply 5V, 100w, 3.5A (To run the 12706 TEC)
Corsair H60 v2 complete watercooling system
1 Scythe GT 5400 rpm (Fitted onto the radiator, LOUD AS F**K)
2 x 120mm outlet fans
1 pcs of 12V splitter 1 to 6
1 pcs Maglite
Wires, shrink hose, screws, connections etc. ("Stuff you have at home")

Housing:

9 mm Plywood
Acrylic sheet 3mm
Superglue
Screws
Filt fabric (the kind you have to cover loudspeakers with),
Insulation (make sure its dense),
Silicone (to make your setup airtight)

Chamber & other:

Glass vase or acrylic dome
2 mm black Delrin (acetal) plastic to make the floor of the chamber (1 mm gets you better results tho)
1 sponge
1 ltr of Isopropanol
A radioactive source of some kind
Balloon or other static source
Thermal grease
 
mwilke (author) 1 year ago
You also find this guide on my project page along with more photos and links where to find sources of radiation, visit >>>> http://cloudchamber.simdif.com