|CX1622S hydrogen thyratron.
This is a fairly large hydrogen thyratron (see previous sample for more about what that means). I sawed the glass envelope off this one because it was coated on the inside with an opaque film of evaporated metal, not uncommon for a vacuum tube that has been operated for a while.
Before sawing off the glass around the base, I very, very carefully cracked the stem of glass coming off the top, with the tube completely wrapped in a thick fiberglass blanket. I was expected some kind of violent reaction involving glass flying everywhere as air rushed in, but nothing of the sort happened, in fact I didn't even hear a hiss. I wonder if this means that hydrogen thyratrons actually have a fairly high pressure of hydrogen, close to a full atmosphere, in them. I haven't found any references to how much is typically in them, but one thing I can say for sure is that this sample hydrogen sample no longer contains any hydrogen: That all escaped as soon as I cracked the glass.
Source: eBay seller gulfbeachbum
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 10 March, 2007
Text Updated: 27 October, 2007