An Electrical Method of Counting the Number of [alpha]-particles from Radioactive Substances. E. Rutherford, H. Geiger.
An Electrical Method of Counting the Number of [alpha]-particles from Radioactive Substances
The discovery of the Geiger Counter

An Electrical Method of Counting the Number of [alpha]-particles from Radioactive Substances

London: Printed for The Royal Society and sold by Harrison & Sons 1908. First Edition. 141-220 pages. Printed tan wrappers. This copy is worn, with minor damp staining to a narrow portion both panels near the spine (extending farthest 1/2 inch diagonally from the lower corner). Overall soiling, some evidence of erased markings on the front panel (red pencil, not completely erased). Clean internally noting a touch of marginal damp staining in the bottom margin of some pages. Still, in the original wrappers, the entire issue offered. The Rutherford/Geiger article is found on pages 141-161. Good. Wraps. [27923]


An important paper that documents the principle behind the Geiger Counter, used today to measure many forms of radiation today, and an important laboratory tool for those who followed.

Both authors are well known in scientific circles. Ernest Rutherford was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1908 "for his investigations into the disintegration of the elements, and the chemistry of radioactive substances." Johannes Wilhelm "Hans" Geiger was a German physicist who worked under Rutherford's direction in this work.

Although this paper documents the discovery, the more rugged practical Geiger Counter we know and use today wasn't developed until much later. Geiger and Walther Müller (a Ph.D. student of Geiger) developed the sealed Geiger–Müller tube circa 1928 which used basic ionization principles previously used experimentally. Small and rugged, not only could it detect alpha and beta radiation as prior models had done, but also gamma radiation. (wiki)

There are other interesting papers in this issue, including Rutherford's "The Charge and Nature of the [alpha]-particle", and "On the Scattering of the [alpha]-articles by Matter" by Geiger.

Price: $500.00