A desk-top computing system has been programmed to store accurately the quench curves necessary for the calculation of total disintegrations/minute (d.p.m.) of samples containing either one or two radioactive isotopes. In producing d.p.m. values background counts are subtracted, and in binary-labelled samples the counts attributable to each radioactive isotope are separated. The programme also relates d.p.m. to the weight, volume and density of the sample. Each variable is easily recalled and adjustments can be made for different batches of samples without reprogramming. Equally easily changes of radioactive isotope, quenching agent, scintillator or window setting can be accommodated. Quadratic equations are used to express the quench curves. Counting efficiencies obtained when the coefficients in the quadratic equations are derived from three carefully chosen points on a quench curve are compared with those obtained when the coefficients are derived by the method of least squares. The results of both mathematical approximations are compared with the efficiencies read by the eye from graphs.

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