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Re: [Amps] how to recognize beryllium

Subject: Re: [Amps] how to recognize beryllium
From: Steve <>
Date: Wed, 09 Feb 2011 10:40:14 +0000
List-post: <">>
You won't meet raw beryllium metal in rf power transistors. The material 
you're probably thinking of is Beryllium Oxide, BeO, often called 
Beryllia. It's the shiny white insulator between the leads and the 
flange on many rf power transistors, especially anything more than a few 
years old - including MRF150.

BeO is not dangerous as long as you don't heat it above 900C or grind it 
into extremely fine powder.

The top cap on rf power transistors is Alumina (Aluminium Oxide) and is 
just about harmless unless broken, when the edges are razor sharp.

Transistor flanges (the metal bit with the fixing holes in it) is mostly 
copper or copper tungsten alloys. I don't know of any specific hazard 
from cleaning up burrs or removing uneven patches.


> All, how can beryllium be recognized?
> First: I know it is found in rf transistor tops; is it found in 
> transistor mounts? An rf transistor mount has been scratched and needs 
> to be resurfaced. The part is an mrf 150, however it would be 
> interesting to know in general.
> Second: I have a heat sink with 'heavy' heat spreader. What are common 
> spreader alloys.
> Third: Is care required to work with beryllium alloys?
> Thanks,
> Dan kb0qil
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