Physics & Astronomy ETDs

Publication Date



An Avco surface ionization mass spectrometer (model 90,000) was installed at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory in February, 1968. Since that date this machine has been used as a production instrument for the isotopic analysis of uranium and plutonium samples. During 1969, it was realized that a problem inherent in the ionization mechanism of the instrument was degrading the accuracy of results, and that the number of man-hours expended in reducing data had become excessive. As soon as this situation became apparent, corrective action was initiated to reduce the effect of the ionization problem and to decrease the amount of "people-time" required for data reduction. A relatively sophisticated computer program called "SPECTRE" was written which has improved the accuracy of published results, and which has released two people from the tedious labor of hand data reduction. This paper describes the steps leading to the successful conclusion of this effort, and analyzes the completed computer program in some detail.

Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name

Physics & Astronomy

First Committee Member (Chair)

Christopher Pratt Leavitt

Second Committee Member

Richard M. Tisinger

Third Committee Member

Seymour S. Alpert

Fourth Committee Member

Bron D. Dieterle

Document Type