Potash regulated X-ray tube, England, 1897-1907

Made:
1897-1907 in England
maker:
Unknown

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Potash regulated X-ray tube, c.1897. Full view, white perspex background with reflection.
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Potash regulated X-ray tube, c.1897

An X-ray tube consists of a cathode (negative electrode) and an anode (positive electrode). Electrodes are emitted from the cathode. They flow to the anode plate generating X-rays when in a vacuum. The completeness of the vacuum inside early X-ray tubes affected its output. This could vary during use. Incorporating potash (potassium carbonate) in a side tube attempted to control this. When the vacuum became too high, heating the potash released a little gas, which lowered it. X-rays were discovered by Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen in November 1895.

Details

Category:
Radiomedicine
Object Number:
A600219
Materials:
anode, aluminium, anticathode, aluminium, cathode, aluminium, regulator, potash, tube, glass
type:
x-ray tube
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • x-ray machine
credit:
Flower, A.H.
status:
Loan: Wellcome Trust

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