Gamma Radiation Shielding Materials

Friday, February 12, 2016
Ashlyn N. Taylor, Kansas Junior Academy of Science, Stark, KS
Madison R. Steenrod, Kansas Junior Academy of Science, Parsons, KS
Lorena D. South, Kansas Junior Academy of Science, Parsons, KS
The purpose of this study is to find the most effective materials to block gamma radiation for future astronaut explorations. The experiment was conducted using a Radex RD1212 Geiger counter and 1 micro-curie Cobalt-60 radiation source. All materials were tested with and without the radiation source. This was done because some elements are naturally radioactive. Most materials that were tested were metals. Some alloys, low density materials, and combinations of materials were tested as well.  Different thicknesses of certain materials were tested as available. Background research was conducted using scientific articles of similar research experiments. This experiment showed that less dense materials can be sandwiched to be nearly as effective as lead in shielding against gamma radiation at the energy levels used in the experiment.