Definition of spinthariscope in English:



  • An instrument that shows the incidence of alpha particles by flashes on a fluorescent screen.

    ‘In 1903 he invented the spinthariscope to detect alpha particles emitted by radioactive elements.’
    • ‘So I happen to have several spinthariscopes of various vintages, of which this item is a poor imitation.’
    • ‘Leo and his friends also took the spinthariscope to an out-of-town astronomers convention and advertised that they had developed an optical system that could penetrate clouds.’
    • ‘Bill handed out two spinthariscopes, which we passed around in the dark room to see the scintillations for ourselves.’
    • ‘After researching uranium for several years he invented an instrument designed to detect alpha-rays called a spinthariscope, which means ‘spark-viewer.’’



/spinˈTHerəˌskōp/ /spɪnˈθɛrəˌskoʊp/


Early 20th century formed irregularly from Greek spintharis ‘spark’+ -scope.