AN event of considerable interest was the opening by H.R.H. the Duchess of York on July 5 of the new Sheffield Radium Centre. It may be mentioned that the Royal Infirmary has been a National Radium Centre for some years. A noteworthy feature of the installation is a new deep X-ray therapy set which has been supplied by the Research Department of the Metropolitan-Vickers Electrical Co., Ltd., and the installation is unique. The equipment comprises two X-ray tubes and the necessary associated apparatus, operating at 200,000 volts. The arrangement is such that it is possible to treat two patients simultaneously, but the apparatus is designed so that this is done with a minimum of complications. The Metropolitan-Vickers Electrical Company's high-voltage X-ray tube for deep therapy treatment has only been rendered possible by the production in the Company's research laboratories of a range of low vapour pressure oils for use as working fluids in condensation pumps, thus enabling the highest vacua to be attained without the use of liquid air or other cooling media. These pumps had already been applied to evacuate dismount able valves, and a considerable amount of experience had been gained on their operation under commercial service conditions. The X-ray tubes possess two great advantages; these are the ease with which filaments, targets, etc., can be replaced, the costly tube renewals necessary in a sealed-off apparatus being eliminated, and the fact that, once the tube has been conditioned, no great care need be taken in the application of the high voltage.
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