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Tritium light sources such as trigalight from mb-microtec can be used for the self-sufficient illumination of scales, which must be reliably readable even in the dark. In these light sources, luminescent powder (zinc sulphide) is stimulated to glow permanently by radioactive tritium gas. The radiation emitted as a result is well below the radiation dose from natural background radiation.

Because of the half-life of tritium of 12.3 years, the luminosity decreases and the light sources have to be replaced.

Nachhaltige Produktion von trigalight Tritium-Lichtquellen
The manufacture of tritium light sources, photo: microtec

A year ago, mb-microtec put a recycling plant into operation with a plant for the safe recovery of tritium. This made it possible to guarantee a closed product life cycle from production to recycling. In an interim assessment after one year of operation, David Corpataux, the plant's chief developer, found that over 90 percent of the tritium could be recovered. This saves tritium resources and significantly reduces transport.

Nachhaltige Produktion von trigalight Tritium-Lichtquellen
Nachhaltige Produktion von trigalight Tritium-Lichtquellen

On the functional principle, mb-microtec writes that the remaining tritium is extracted from the glass capillary and released with the help of a filter. It can then be fully reused. The purity of the recycled gas is identical to that of newly purchased tritium, without any loss of quality. The time-consuming disposal of waste - for example in the form of offcuts from production - is almost completely eliminated, which guarantees a sustainable life cycle for trigalight products.

Editors / gwh