My special thanks to Dr. Armin J. Bickel, who introduced me to the "secrets" of scintillation counter technology and who - at his age - still answered my many questions with clarity and in detail. (citation: Edgar Gummerum)
Dr. Armin J. Bickel, born in Sondershausen in Thuringia, was a master at watch-making and started his career as an astrophysicist at the research centre of Pennemuende, where he was involved in the development of the V2-rocket. During the 50s, he immigrated to Canada. Later, until his retirement, he worked on different rocket development projects and did research on space technology under Werner von Braun at NASA, mainly in Lompoc, California, "Western Missile Test Range".
After retirement, Dr. Armin J. Bickel found - in the 70s - ISOTOPE GEOLOGY & MINING EXPLORATION INC. Neutron activated sensing - mineral, oil, gas, and water. As an expert on natural nuclear reactions he used his extensive work experience and developed special scintillation counters which he used to prospect water, oil, diamonds, and minerals. He sold his devices and even used them himself with great success in several countries. Among others things he undertook geological examinations for large constructions, where the nature of the bearing material was of great importance.
Dr. Armin J. Bickel also did research in other fields: within a research project he treated the roots of plants with a ultrasound-frequency and achieved oversize growth. In the case of lemon trees, the fruits tripled and quadrupled in size. Sunflowers also became oversized, taller. It was interesting that the stem of the plants also adjusted to the fruit size. He was an endowed researcher and had a wide knowledge spectrum, most of his finding not available anymore today. Until his death he lived in Lompoc, California, close to Vandenberg Air Force Base.
In memory of Dr. Armin J. Bickel, an ingenious scientist.