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Multiwire - MWL120 Specs
MWL120 System Specifications and Requirements

X-ray Detector

The heart of the MWL120 system is a proportional wire chamber with a 30cm x 30cm active area. The detector is equipped with a selection of four interchangeable collimators (0.5, 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0 mm), a fail-safe X-ray shutter, and a gas delivery system comprising a gas regulator with a CGA580 inlet (for a 90% Argon, 10% CO2 gas mixture). The detector features built-in electronics for digitizing preamplifier signals, and diagnostic and gas flow readings can be viewed from within NorthStar 7, the latest version of our orientation software.


The MWL120 system includes a computer with NorthStar 7 preloaded. This computer is tested with your detector to ensure compliance and proper functionality with your MWL120 system.

Minimum Computer Specifications:
  • Multi-core CPU
  • 4GB RAM
  • 250GB hard drive
  • DVD drive
  • Multiple USB ports
  • US keyboard
  • Optical mouse
  • Color LCD monitor
  • Windows 7 Professional (32-bit) Operating System
  • 4U Rack-Mount Chassis (19" rack standard)
    Physical Extents: 19.7" x 19.1" x 7.0" (50cm x 48.5cm x 17.8cm)

A USB printer is recommended for use with the MWL120 system. A printer is not supplied by Multiwire and must be purchased from a third party.

X-ray Source Requirements

The MWL120 system requires an X-ray source for operation. A standard-focus tungsten X-ray tube is recommended that is continuously adjustable over the range of 9 to 25 KV and 1 to 20 mA of current, full-wave rectified or constant potential. The 9 to 20 KV operation is essential for crystals containing significant quantities of elements that may fluoresce in the 5 to 20 keV range. Low voltage operation will minimize the production of fluorescent X-rays which are also imaged by the detector system.

Environmental Requirements

Room temperature less than 24° C (76° F) and relative humidity less than 50%.

Power Requirements

Installation of the MWL120 system is provided at additional charge. The customer will need to provide a mounting point for the motor controller and the computer with its peripherals (monitor, keyboard, and mouse). The motor controller and computer chassis conform to a standard 19" (48cm) rack form factor. Also, a power strip with at least four outlets should complement the X-ray enclosure or rack to supply AC power to the system.

Expected Power Draw:

110-120 VAC 220-240 VAC
MWL120 Detector 1.5 A, 50-60 Hz 1.5 A, 50-60 Hz
Motor Controller 5 A 3 A
Computer 4 A 2 A
LCD Monitor 1 A 1 A

X-ray Track

A cast iron track approximately 2" (5 cm) wide by 15" (38 cm) long is provided by MWL and serves as a mounting point for accessories such as the three-axis orientation stage and the leaded beam stop.

Collimator Extension Tube

This tube, supplied with the MWL120 system, engages the camera with your X-ray shutter assembly. Typically, this is an insulated 1/2" (1.27 cm) diameter tube with a 1/8" (0.318 cm) hole through the center. Other sizes are available upon request, such as a 16.5 mm larger-head version for a Philips style X-ray tube.

Leaded Beam Stop

The leaded beam stop clamps to the X-ray track and absorbs any direct X-rays that might otherwise reach an operator if a crystal sample is removed from the X-ray beam. The leaded beam stop is imperative for radiation safety and can be purchased with the MWL120 system.

Gas Cylinder

A 1A size gas cylinder with a mixture of 90% Argon and 10% CO2 is needed to operate the camera and must be available during the time of the installation.

The MWL120 system includes a gas regulator which fits a 580 cylinder outlet and includes all the requisite plumbing to service the MWL120 system. This cylinder should last 4 to 6 months during continuous trickle-flow operation.

A cylinder containing 10% bone dry CO2 and the balance argon, unanalyzed, with a CGA580 standard outlet can be ordered from Matheson Gas Products, Inc., 1650 Enterprise Parkway, Twinsburg, Ohio 44087, USA, Phone (216)-425-4406.


See the following PDF for the physical dimensions of the MWL120 system:


MWL provides a one year warranty on all parts and labor for the MWL120 system effective upon installation by authorized Multiwire personnel.

Multiwire Laboratories, Ltd.