2005 Nevada Rocketry Trip Report/Photos

I've posted a detailed report of my annual Nevada camping and rocketry trip here:
http://www.rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=19915
Or if you just want to skip straight to the photos, go here:
http://albums.photo.epson.com/j/AlbumIndex?u=3009006&a=31862694
ˇ
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Ray,
Nice photos as usual.
About those "rocks you found near the mine." Do you know what kind of rocks they are or what kind of mine it was? Nevada was home to lots of uranium mines at one time, and I wouldn't be surprised if what you picked up was Torbernite, a high grade ore of uranium that is green in color. You'd need a geiger counter to verify its identity, since it is pretty hot (radioactive) compared to other ores (although not dangerously so). It is mainly found in central Africa, but occasionally turns up in the United States through whatever geological process that occurs.
If my suspicions are correct, you may have several hundred dollars worth of high quality Torbernite on your hands. It is a hot item (pun intended) on eBay and with radioactive mineral collectors. You would need a radiation detector like a geiger counter to be sure though.
If I may, I suggest you bring such a detector with you on future trips, as there's no telling what sort of valuable hot rocks you may find. Prospecting for Uranium combined with flying rockets would make for the ultimate vacation. Just don't go into abandoned uranium mines! The physical hazards are obvious, but waht is less obvious is that huge volumes of stagnant and dangerous Radon gas can accumulate, second only to smoking in causing lung cancer.
Brian McDermott
snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

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Brian McDermott wrote:

These were found in the eastern Mojave in California. There were several mines in the area, at least one of them was a copper mine. So I don't think these rocks are anything as exciting as that.

I might try that sometime. How much do geiger counters usually cost?
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On 16 Aug 2005 11:56:23 -0700, " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

From the pics, it looked like Turquoise to me.

Getem cheap at army surplus places.
Nice pics. You didn't bury Jerry in one of those mines did you?
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Phil Stein wrote:

Thanks
No, I don't want the EPA on my butt. Jerry can only be buried in an officially approved toxic waste facility. ;)
n
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On 16 Aug 2005 13:01:50 -0700, " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

I thought that's what Navada was for. 8-)
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Torbernite contains copper, so it isn't completely out of the question.
Geiger counters can be found on ebay, ranging from a few tens of dollars to over $500, depending on the quality of the meter and probe. Some models to keep an eye out for would be the CDV700 or Ludlum Model 3 (must have a probe). There are also a bunch of small, Russian-made units that are cheap, sensitive and reasonably accurate, but the range is very low. You want something that can measure Alpha, Beta and Gamma radiation, with Beta and Gamma being the bare minimum.
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I have in my bedroom an old geiger counter (with radioactive sample) that my grandfather had back in WW-II (he might have had it before then) The manual is long since lost and it has no power source (requires a battery from 1940's time)
I keep it because its kinda cool....and it was my grandfather's.
-Aaron
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I've posted a detailed report of my annual Nevada camping and rocketry trip here:
Nice!
Did you know one of your rockets looks just like a rattlesnake?
Randy http://vernarockets.com /
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Beautiful pics, Ray! Gorgeous country as well! Personally, I've never been to Nevada (or west of eastern Texas, for that matter). Hopefully, my wife and I can arrange a trip to go see her uncle in AZ sometime in the near future...maybe it can coincide with NARAM..wishful thinking :]
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Very nice photos -- thanks for sharing!
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