What In The Gamma Is That? Libre spectroscopy software. https://spacecruft.org/spacecruft/witgit
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witgit - What In the Gamma Is That?

witgit is free software gamma ray spectroscopy software under development intended to be used with low cost and DIY hardware running on a free operating system. For educational use only, and probably not even that.


It would be swell to support "all" low cost and DIY hardware. These types of hardware appear to the operating system as a sound card, which makes it "easy", without having to do complicated custom drivers.

Libre / Open Source Hardware

  • DIY_particle_detector, open source hardware:


Proprietary Hardware

Proprietary hardware that is known to work with other DIY software.

  • Images Scientific Instruments Digital Geiger Counter, various GCA models, e.g. GCA-07W-DL.


  • RH Electronics MPPC SiPM CsI(Tl). Various models, such as RH-UNIT-MPPC-8-8-50.



HOWTO Install. Development is currently done using Debian stable (Bullseye/11), which uses Python 3.9.

Install Dependencies

Get system dependency and upgrade Python pip. Perhaps do something like this, or set up a Python virtual environment.

sudo apt update
sudo apt install git python3-pip
pip install --user --upgrade pip

Clone Git Repo

Get source code with git.

git clone https://spacecruft.org/spacecruft/witgit
cd witgit/
pip install --user --upgrade -r requirements.txt


HOWTO USE. The first step is to record a sample. This is similar to just doing an audio recording. The next step is to process that file, then visualize, then categorize. Along these lines...

mkdir -p data

./witgit-rec                                   # Record

./witgit-proc [filename]                       # Process

./witgit-plot [filename]                       # View Plot

./witgit-wut  [filename]                       # Categorize

Files are automatically timestamped and written to the data/ directory.


The code will be built using bits from other free software / open source applications.

DIY Particle Detector

The main source is the "DIY Particle Detector" by Oliver Keller from CERN. It is available upstream under a BSD license, a copy of which is in the docs/ directory.


Other Software

Other spectroscopy software used in DIY community. Caveat: I haven't used the below software, corrections welcome.

Free Software


Theremino is a great system with an emphasis on education that supports a very wide range of Arduinos and other equipment. The software can be used for many more purposes than just gamma ray spectroscopy. The showstopper in this case is it is written for a proprietary operating system. There are ways to emulate that system, but that is undesirable.

Proprietary Software

BecqMoni MCA

BecqMoni MCA was quickly created in response to the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan. It uses .NET 3.5 framework under a proprietary operating system. It is freeware, not free software nor open source software. No one has maintained the software for years, nor can anyone improve it. The last release was 2013. It has bitrot and now mostly useless.


PRA is what the Free Software Foundation would call "freeware", not Free Software. The PRA author calls the software "free software", as they have every right to do, but it is not what the larger free software community generally considers free software. PRA does not provide source code as far as I can tell, for example. It is also written for a proprietary operating system.


Alpha software under development.

Tested Hardware

Appears to work with:

  • RH Electronics RH-UNIT-MPPC-8-8-50.


License: GPLv3 or any later version. Other code licensed under their own respective licenses.

Upstream: Copyright (C) 2019, Oliver Keller

Copyright (C) 2022, Jeff Moe