US 3074276 A
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Jan. 22, 1963 w. s. Moos RADIOACTIVITY SMEAR SAMPLER 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed April 20, 1959 Fig.1
Walter S. Moos 1N VEN TOR. M 06k- BY Zn aw 3m Jan. 1963 w. s. Moos 3,074,276
RADIOACTIVITY SMEAR SAMPLER Filed April 20, 1959 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Fig.5
Waller S. Moos Mm BY M 1N VEN TOR.
Unite States atent Ofilice 3,'M,2?ii Patented Jan. 22, 1963 This invention relates to new and useful improvements in the means and techniques for preparation of samples for both bacteria and radioactivity count.
Although the principal application of the invention 1s in connection with the preparation of a counting sample for radioactivity suspected substances, it is to be clearly understood that the principles of the invention are equally applicable with other substances such as those with which bacteria count is the objective.
If areas such as walls, tables, floors, etc. are suspected to be contaminated with radioactive dust, flakes, deposits from evaporated liquids or other forms of radioactive contamination, the usual procedure is to collect samples of such material using filter or blotting paper. This paper is smeared over the area suspected to be contaminated, and the paper is cut in small disks to fit planchets which in turn are placed under a Geiger-Mueller counter or a scintillation probe and the activity is determined.
The invention improves the technique. Many of the steps necessary with the conventional methods are avoided, saving a considerable amount of time and better results are achieved. One of the samplers or this invention is placed on the suspected area and the inside disk of the sampler is strongly depressed with one finger. In this way the adhesive covering on the disk surface will make contact with the contaminant and retain it when the sampler is pulled oif the walls, table tops, etc. An inner disk in the assembly of this invention will snap back due to the spring action associated with it and automatically will protect the collected sample from being lost in part or whole by touching or rubbing the collecting surface. The adhesive can be a single use type which means discarding the sampler after it is used or it can be of a multiple use construction employing pressure sensitive tape, such as Scotch brand cellophane adhesive tape with an adhesive on both sides. After one use, the thin contaminated tape can be pulled off and replaced with a new tape without discarding the rest of the sampler mechanism.
The sampler of this invention may be mounted on top of another providing further protection against loss of the samples. The usual methods have the filter paper smears placed in envelopes and the material is often lost during carrying or manipulations. This difficulty is completely avoided by use of this invention.
To summarize some of the advantages of the invention:
(1) Always known sample area covered with collected material. In the old manner the sample size varied with which fingers were used, pressure applied etc., and the results were spotty coverings of different thickness of collected material.
(2) The samples with the new instrument are more uniform in thickness.
(3) Points 1 and 2 facilitate calculation of activity per unit area (no irregular areas like finger prints).
(4) No rubbing through of paper on rough surfaces.
(5) Collected dust particles adhere strongly to the adhesive surface and will not be removed very easy by air drafts etc. In this manner, cross contamination or contamination of counters etc. becomes virtually impossible.
(6) No blowing away of loose smear papers.
(7) No problem of transporting a larger number of samples.
(8) No placing of individual Smear samples into envelopes, etc.
(9) Not space consuming.
(10) No tedious cutting of paper.
(11) No further handling. Can be placed directly into counter.
Accordingly, an object of the invention is to improve the techniques of handling samples by means of a novel structural sampler which not only facilitates the collection of the sample but also protects the sample during the whole and entire procedure involved with the sample.
These together with other objects and advantages which .will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:
FIGURE 1 is a vertical stack of samplers shown in elevation, parts being broken away in section to show how the samplers may be nested with each other for storage prior to use or after use.
FIGURE 2 is a sectional view of atypical sampler showing it in use.
FIGURE 3 is a sectional view of the same sampler in FIGURE 2 but showing a second step in the use of the sampler.
FIGURE 4 is an exploded pler in FEGURE 2.
FIGURE 5 is a front elevational view of a conventional counter with the door open showing the sample in place on a sampler holder as it would be positioned for radioactivity counting.
FIGURE 6 is a top view of a modification of the sampler.
FIGURE 7 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 77 of FIGURE 6.
In the accompanying drawings there is illustrated a conventional counter 10. This radioactivity counter is not only conventional but is merely a selected one of a number of commercially available counters which operate on different principles, for instance scintillation counting, Geiger-Mueller counters which operates on a different principle from that of a scintillation counter, etc. There is one feature common to all of the counters with which the invention is applicable and that is (insofar as the invention is concerned) a holder 12 of one type or another on which a sampler is supported.
Sampler 14 (FIGURE 5) is shown in place on holder 12. The specific construction of the sampler constitutes what is deemed to be a major improvement in the handling of radioactivity suspected bearing material. Sampler 14 is made of a holder body 16. The holder body has a cylindrical outer wall 18, and an end wall 29 extending across one end of the cylindrical wall I8. Wall 21' has a central aperture 22 through which the finger of the user (FIGURE 2) may be projected. A circumferential shoulder 2 is inset slightly from the surface of wall 18 and forms a key with which to engage an adjacent sampler (FIGURE 1) when the samplers are stacked.
Disk 26 is mounted within the casing of the sampler. The disk is preferably circular but has a lateral flange 28 at its inner end forming an abutment against which coil spring 30 seats. One end of the coil spring is seated on the abutment formed by flange 28, and the other end of the spring is disposed in a circumferential groove 32 in the inside surface of cylindrical wall 18. This holds the spring captive within cavity 34 of the sampler, and the bias of the spring is in a direction which pushes disk 26 to a rest position against the inside surface 40 of wall 2% (FIGURE 2).
An adhesive film 42 of non-drying pressure sensitive adhesive is applied to the front face of disk 26. This adhesive is the collection and retaining agent for the dust, dirt, particles etc. suspected of being contaminated with radioactive material, or Whose bacteria count is to be taken, etc.
In use, the sampler is placed on the surface 44 suspected perspective view of the samiient means react.
of being contaminated or from which a sample is to be taken for other purposes. When in this position (FIG- URE 3) disk .26 is retracted within cavity 34. The user simply pushes on the face 48 of disk 26, for example with one finger as shown in FIGURE 2, thereby pushing the disk outwardly of the open end 50 of casing 16. This is against the yielding opposition of spring 39. By applying enough pressure and holding the casing, the adhesive film 42 on the disk comes to bear against the surface 44 and collects the sample.
Adhesive film 42 may be of any available material which will serve the purpose, there being at the present time numerous non-drying synthetic and/ or natural adhesives which will serve the purpose. The adhesive film 42 is subject to a number of variations. It may be applied to the face of disk 26 directly, applied to a flexible and pliable sheet of paper 54 (FIGURE 4) which is united to disk 26 or as shown in FIGURE 6, the adhesive film 42 may be a portion of a paper or other type of material disk 60 separably attached to the disk 26. A very satistactory arrangement (FIGURES 6 and 7) is to have pressure sensitive adhesive disks or tapes used where thedisk or tape is furnished with adhesive on both surfaces thereof. Then the disk which has the adhesive surface 42 thereon may be simply peeled from the disk 26 in order to enable it to be replaced by another quantity of adhesive material so that the support may be re-used.
The support may be constructed so inexpensively that it could well be a disposable device to be discarded after a single use. For this reason commercially available plastics may be used to construct all parts of the sampler except the spring and of course, the adhesive and even here, the adhesive may be made of a plastic type substance.
As shown in FIGURE 1 the samplers can be nested in a stack. In such an arrangement the shoulder part 24 of wall 20 nests within the open end 50 of an adjacent sampler thereby stacking neatly and securely.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention as claimed.
What is claimed as new is as follows:
1. A sampler comprising a casing having wall means defining a cavity, an end wall at one end of said wall means having an aperture through which the finger of a user may be projected, a movable member in said cavity and on which an adhesive film is secured and means disposed within said casing for yieldingly opposing movement of the movable member by the users finger toward a test surface to be contacted 'by the adhesive film and operative to retract said movable member with the adhesive film thereon from the test surface upon release thereof by the users finger.
2. The sampler of claim 1, wherein said last mentioned means includes a spring connected with said wall means and reacting on said member to yieldingly oppose the movement of said member with reference to said casing.
3. The sampler of claim 1 wherein said last mentioned means includes a springconnected with said wall means and reacting on said member. to yieldingly oppose the movement of said member with reference to said casing in one direction and hold said member in a normally retracted position within said casing.
4. The sampler of claim 3 wherein said member consists of a disk having a lateral flange on which said resil- 5. A sampler comprising'a casing having a side wall and. defining a cavity, an end wall at the end of the first mentioned wall and having an aperture through which the finger of a user may be projected, a movable member in said cavity and on which an adhesive film is secured,
Further, since numerous spasms a spring connected with said first mentioned wall and reacting on said member to yieldingly oppose the movement of said member with reference to said casing in one direction and hold said member in a normally retracted position within said casing, said end wall having a shoulder set in from the outer surface of the first mentioned wall to for-m a key within which to fit into the adjacent open end of an adjacent sampler so that the samplers may be nested in a column.
6. A sampler for suspected contaminated substances, said sampler comprising a casing having wall means which defines a cavity, a member mounted for movement in said cavity, said wall means having an open end through which a portion of said member is projectible, an adhesive substance on the portion of said member which is projectible through the open end of said wall means, said adhesive substance being adapted to accumulate and hold a sample and means mounted in the casing operatively connected to said member for biasing the member to a retracted position with the adhesive substance and samples protectively enclosed by the casing.
7. The sampler of claim 6, wherein said last mentioned means includes a resilient means reacting on said casing and said member to yieldingly oppose the movement of said member in one direction.
8. The sampler-of claim 6 wherein said last mentioned means includes resilient means reacting on said casing and said member to yieldingly oppose the movement of said member in one direction, and retract said member Within said casing. i
9. The sampler of claim 6 wherein said last mentioned means includes resilient means reacting on said casing and said member to yieldingly oppose the movement of said member in one direction, and retract said member within said casing, said Casing having an end wall against which said member normally rests and is retained by the action of said resilient means. i
10. The sampler as defined in claim 9, including means connected with said casing to engage an adjacent sampler and hold the samplers in nested relationship with each other.
11. The sampler of claim 10 wherein said end wall has a finger receiving aperture therein to receive the finger of the user in projecting the member outwardly of said casing against the yielding opposition of said resilient means.
12. The combination of claim 11 wherein said resilient means consists of a spring reacting on a portion of said casing and on a portion of said member.
13. A sampler for suspected contaminated substances,
said sampler comprising a casing having a side wall which defines a cavity, a member mounted for movement in said casing, said casing having an open end through which a portion of said member is projectible, an adhesive film on the portion of said member which is projectible through the open end of said casing and onto which to accumulate and hold a sample, resilient means reacting on said casing and said member to yieldingly oppose the movement of said member in one direction, and retract said member within said casing, said casing having an end wall against which said member normally rests and is retained by the action of said resilient means, said adhesive film having a backing thereon for adhering the film'to said member when the member is both projected against a surface and then retracted, said backing being removable from the member for substitution by another adhesive film bearing backing.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS
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