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NEWS  (new topics as of 6 November 2005)
We have moved our offices--phones are re-configured
Custom development project--a cooperative venture to develop an automated radioluminescence reader
Some nice figures about our Single Grain Laser Scanner
Finally, some crosstalk measurements for the 2200; improvements to the 1100 OSL light baffle
Improvements to the 2200
A beautiful little x-ray irradiator (get some for the kids!)
A low-noise red PMT (under 25 dark cts/sec at room temperature)
Pulse-mode OSL

Most of the technical documents on the site are also available in PDF format for printing.  If you do not have Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on your computer please click the icon above for a free copy of the latest version.

Daybreak Nuclear has been a leader in development and manufacture of instrumentation for luminescence dating for about 25 years now.  We have endeavored not only to keep up with the results of current research with elegantly engineered reader systems, but also to provide an upgrade path for our systems already in the field.  Daybreak's current slate of instruments  includes two automated systems for TL/OSL, a forthcoming single sample TL/OSL reader, and an optimised high-capacity OSL reader with a variety of light sources.  Add-ons include a four-channel detector for photon counting in four wavelength bands simultaneously and a single grain array laser scanner OSL exciter.  We also provide a rather complete set of instruments to round out the luminescence laboratory, including several sample irradiators and an alpha counter/data logger.

We are open to custom modifications of our systems to suit special needs.  An example of this is an automated multi-spectral radioluminescence reader developed jointly with the Saxon Academy of Science in Germany.  This is an exciting new type of measurement system that makes possible a brand-new approach to sediment dating.  It is based on the 1100 reader, with some mechanical additions for a special two-part platter with computer-controlled phasing between them.

We recently have embarked on a major project to advance the state of software for data acquisition and analysis far beyond our TLapplic package, first made available in 1980 for the Apple II (if you can remember that far back), and its fruits are just now being released to our licensees.  Please look at the page about FirstLight 2.0, our initial offering.  Our intention is to achieve maximum flexibility and ease of use for the researcher both in experimental protocols (though the use of script-based algorithms) and in data reduction and computation.  We are aiming toward an XML database approach that will be almost completely customizable to suit the user's needs.

This site at present is a compendium of existing materials that will be added to as new documents are written.  We try to be free with useful information that we hope will allow you to make purchasing decisions with no later surprises, and are always open to queries and suggestions, so please contact us if you have any need for anything further (even if you want advice about how to build your own reader or write your own software--we encourage it!).


26 September 2003--Moving along on our quest to make XML file formats the de facto standard, we will have shortly a new Windows data taking program and a new version of FirstLight to use this very versatile self-defining file format.

23 September 2003--We have been evaluating a very nice miniature 40kV x-ray irradiation source as a beta substitute.  This winter we will be working on integrating it into the 2200 system.  It does certainly help avoid the bureaucratic and regulatory hassles to do with radioactive sources, but at a price. Namely, these x-ray tubes do have a limited lifetime, and will have to be replaced every few years.  However, in certain applications (not to mention certain jurisdictions) the convenience will outweight the cost.

11 August 2003--We are about to start producing a combination alpha/beta irradiator.  The Am-241 foil source slides in under the beta shutter. Admittedly this is irradiation in air, but I continue to argue that this in no way compromises the accuracy of the final dates obtained (the alpha efficiency being fairly low so the errors in irradiation generally affect the dates by relatively little, and in any case, calibration can be done in the manner of David Zimmerman's 1972 fine grain paper in Archaeometry.  Admit it: it really is good enough; time to stop agonizing about vacuum irradiations!

3 February 2003--We are about to put a demo version of FirstLight on this site.  It will be a full-featured version with a 30-day limited lifetime from installation.  After that period it will permit display and edit functions, but no data reduction or computations.  Several data sets are provided to allow you to play with it.  It supports mixed TL and OSL data files from all our readers, as well as IRIS4 multispectral files.  The help file for this application is quite comprehensive, but we would like feedback about any difficulties you might have getting started with it.

12 October 2002--The 2200 OSL reader now comes with a third stage position, for a bleach lamp or alpha irradiator, or combination.  An optional unheated sample irradiator, available now,  may be put at this position, with the all-solid-state bleach source and alpha irradiator in development.  The bleach source has a maximum of 400 mW/cm2 of blue light and 150 mW/cm2 of IR simultaneously (sources and power selectable at the light source, but not yet computer-selectable).

6 September 2002--We now can offer the new ZnS screens at a lower price, US$ 135 per 100 for the 44mm size, and US$ 150 per 100 for the older 1 15/16 inch size. We have a limited stock of these screens, and plan to stock in greater depth later as we get the price further reduced.

26 September 2001--New version of TLAPPLIC with full implementation of scripts now available.
The final version of TLAPPLIC is now ready.  This has full implementation of scripts and a comprehensive manual.  The software will be available on this web site through a special link that will be emailed to all licensees.  FirstLight 2.0  just needs a bit more work on the help file/manual and finishing of the singla aliquot computations before initial release. We know that you have been waiting for a really long time for this, but it really is worth the wait, and works just as the page on this site advertises. The next stage is to go to the expanded ascii file format, and start the work on the XML aspects of the project.  We are currently working on integrating the 2200 and IRIS4 into the datataking portion.

25 July 2001--Firmware update available for 1100-series readers.
The revision 2.5 firmware for the model 1100 has been improved by the addition of several new commands and modes of operation implemented for the 2200 OSL reader.  Revision 3.0 supports linear intensity ramps for OSL, multiple detectors such as the IRIS4, and even more flexible timebase control.  The point number in the output string is now two bytes, so that it is correct when the number of points exceeds 255.  (This will be activated when TLapplic is updated to read the new string in the next couple of weeks.  Email us on the contact page to request this update.  We are going to implement a password-controlled download so you will not have to accept megabyte attached files--we know they sometimes won't work!)  You can now change the ramp rate during a ramp.  Read the paper on the Daybreak command language  for more information. The cautions 'for 2200 only' will no longer apply.   The new version of TLapplic automatically senses the version and sets up the software without user intervention.  The new version for the 1150 will be ready shortly as well.  However, we have a small space problem with the 1150 firmware EPROM, so at present we will be omitting control of the filter wheel in the 860 Xe arc OSL source.  This will affect only a few people.  Please let us know if it presents a problem; with some effort we could probably squeeze a few bytes out of the code, and fit it in.  The price will be USD 100, including express mail anywhere, to cover expenses. We will not accept any purchase orders where any amount of paperwork on our part is necessary, so please pay in advance with a check in USD drawn on a US bank, or pay by credit card (Mastercard/Visa).  We will bring these parts to Reno for the meeting next June if you request.

14 July 2001--ZnS screen supply
We have the supply problem for ZnS screens nearly solved.  They are available now, but at a fairly steep price (USD175 per 100) since they are made in small lots.  We are working with the supplier to get production quantities up to the point where we can see the USD 100 per 100 mark again.  It would help if you wrote and indicated how many you might need for the next year or two, so we can make it worth the effort for the supplier to make the raw stock in the larger size required to lower the price.  For printer paper suppliers for the 583 and 801 (801E) see the alpha counter page.