Thursday, October 23, 2008

Triboluminescence – Xrays From A Natural Property, Unnaturally

Sticky Science A finger's x-ray taken with a tape-powered device. The sticky tape setup is in the background. Image Credit: Carlos Camara, Juan Escobar and Seth Putterman - UCLA

Triboluminescence – Xrays From A Natural Property, Unnaturally

Some of the craziest discoveries are found through happenchance or just simply by accident. In an edition of the latest of these discoveries, it has been perfected that through a process as simple as peeling transparent tape (commonly known as Scotch Tape popularized by 3M) one can capture and develop an xray image on film.

This property of excited electron activity when peeling transparent tape was first noticed about fifty (50) years ago in Russia. Some Russian scientists reported evidence of X-rays from peeling sticky tape off of glass.

Fast forward to California and work done by graduate students and staff researchers at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).

The result of this process when recorded by radiographic film is a fuzzy x-ray of the finger bone of physicist Seth Putterman, who runs the lab in which it was made. This undated composite image provided by the UCLA Laboratory of Low Temperatures and Acoustics, shows an image of an x-ray made with Scotch tape superimposed on a hand on top of a vacuum chamber with a roll of Scotch tape mounted on ball bearings inside. Image Credit: AP Photo/ UCLA Laboratory of Low Temperatures and Acoustics, Carlos Camara, Juan V. Escobar and Seth J. Putterman

This excerpted and edited from Scientific American –

Science Friction: An X-Ray Machine Energized by Adhesive Tape
Researchers take an image of a finger using film and some tape
By Susannah F. Locke, Scientific American - October 22, 2008

It may sound bizarre—or like some kind of high school
science fair project, but it's not: Researchers have discovered that peeling adhesive tape ejects enough radiation to take an x-ray image. If they stick, the findings could set the stage for a less expensive x-ray machine that does not require electricity.

Lead researcher Carlos Camara, a physicist at the University of California, Los Angeles, reports in Nature today that his team captured
x-rays of a finger on film (positioned behind it) by using a simple tape-peeling device (placed in front of it).

How is that possible? It turns out that
radiation is released when tape is ripped from a surface. The reason, says Camara: electrons (negatively charged atomic particles) leap from a surface (peeling off of glass or aluminum works, too) to the adhesive side of a freshly yanked strip of tape, traveling so fast that they give off radiation, or energy, when they slam into it.
"We have high hopes that this can be a very inexpensive alternative source of x-rays good enough to take x-ray images," Camara tells x-ray machines require expensive electrical components to create a beam of high-energy electrons that is aimed at a metal target.
Worried about radiation from the tape dispenser on your desk? Don't. In both a conventional and the experimental x-ray machine, electrons travel unhindered by air molecules through a vacuum chamber; that allows them to produce the higher energy needed to make x-rays.
Normal air, comprised of nitrogen and oxygen and other gases, slows the electrons to a pace that is so sluggish there is only enough energy left to produce a faintly visible, benign blue light.
Reference Here>>

Funny what God leaves for us to discover here on this Oblate Spheroid. Check out the property called triboluminescence yourself by peeling tape in the dark.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Little ‘NoHo’ Model Draws Some Attention

"Little NoHo" as shown at the NoHo Scene festival last weekend. The "Little NoHo" project was created using common objects such as Lego building blocks, bottle caps, game pieces, dominoes, mahjong tiles, jewelry and lapel pins. The model featured parks, bridges, bike paths, plazas, streetcar lines and public art. Image Credit: Mark Kellam – Daily News

Little ‘NoHo’ Model Draws Some Attention

Artist and urban planner, James Rojas, who had built model planning projects which allow for viewer interactive input for the city of Los Angeles before, came up with a 3-D model and plan for the North Hollywood arts district and surrounding neighborhoods.

The model asks people viewing it to participate in the display by adding elements and discuss the project with Rojas so that the L.A. Community Redevelopment Agency, the sponsor of the model display, can benefit from ideas shared through the brainstorm process of the interactivity.

Will any of the ideas placed in the Rojas ‘NoHo’ model ever see the light of day? Only time will tell; it is not known if any of the models that James Rojas has built have ever been adopted as a serious blueprint for urban development.

This excerpted and edited from the Daily News via -

Residents get to give input about 'Little NoHo'
Contributed by: Mark Kellam - 10/10/2008

Man-made streams along Lankershim Boulevard. More benches and a children's playground in North Hollywood Park. Improvements along Vineland Avenue.

Those were some of the changes proposed in an interactive art/urban development model that was on display at the NoHo Scene festival last weekend. Visitors also got to provide their own input.
"Little NoHo" was created by L.A. urban planner James Rojas, who was at the North Hollywood festival. He said visitors of all ages got into the act.

The feedback was varied. For example, some people said the buildings were too tall, while others said they'd like more tall buildings.

The model showed North Hollywood from Burbank Boulevard to Camarillo Street (north/south) and from Tujunga Avenue to Vineland (east/west).

He saw one woman doing something with model pieces at Camarillo and Vineland. "She said she was recreating all the traffic accidents that happen there," Rojas said, chuckling.

As part of the model, Rojas put a man-made stream running down the center of Lankershim, which got lots of positive comments.

He also created traffic roundabouts along Burbank, Tujunga and Camarillo. "There are super long streets in the Valley," Rojas said. "The roundabouts break things up and make the streets more pedestrian friendly."

Rojas made a park with a lake off Tujunga, which kids enjoyed and provided whimsical input. "They put mermaids in the lake," he said.

Rojas has done interactive models before, including a model for the L.A. River project last year and at an event in Watts a few weeks ago.

The models are sponsored by the L.A. Community Redevelopment Agency, but Rojas does his work on the models as a volunteer.

"This is an exercise to get people thinking about the city and urban planning and break down barriers people have about the city," Rojas said. "It gets people comfortable. It's not contentious."
Reference Here>>