Difference between GM Counter and Proportional Counter

GM Counter vs Proportional Counter

Proportional Counter vs GM Counter
(Difference between Proportional Counter and GM Counter)

Proportional counter and GM counters are devices to detect and quantify radiations. The proportional counter is able to detect the energy of incident radiation and produce an output proportional to the intensity of the radiation. A GM counter detects ionizing radiation such as alpha particles, beta particles and gamma rays using the ionization effect produced in a Geiger–Müller tube. Both the instruments can quantify the intensity of radiation and have immense application in research, medicine and nuclear industry.

The present post discusses the differences between a Proportional counter and a GM counter with a comparison table.

Difference between Proportional Counter and GM Counter

Sl. No.Proportional CounterGM Counter
Proportional Counter NotesGeiger Muller Counter Working
1Proportional counter operate in linear mode.GM counter operate in avalanche mode.
2The energy pulse measured by the detector is proportional to the energy of the radioactive particle.The energy pulse measured by the detector is NOT proportional to the energy of the radioactive particle.
3The average current flow in the detector is a function of both the activity (curies) and the energy (kEv) of the source.The average current flow in the detector is a function of only the activity (curies) of the source.
4This detector is better at measuring the dose rate of the source.This detector is better at measuring the activity of the source
5The voltage pule is low.The voltage pulse is very high.
6Requires pulse voltage amplification.It does not require pulse voltage amplification.
7The pulse height is proportional to the energy of the incident ionizing radiation.The pulse height is independent of the energy of the incident particles.
8Can detect low energy radiationsCannot detect lower energy radiations.
9Cannot detect uncharged particles such as neutrons.Can detect uncharged particles.
10Resolving power of the proportional counter is high.Resolving power of GM counter is low.

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