DIY X-Ray Photography with Polaroids

Aaron Muderick of Omnimatter (a fantastic blog, btw) is fascinated with x-ray. Turns out, it's not so difficult to make your very own x-ray photography using Polaroids!

Here's a step-by-step guide (using naturally occurring radiactive material and and other radioactive sources):

For some time I've been fascinated with the idea of reproducing these types of images in my home lab without great cost and with relative safety. As a collector of radioactive minerals and other ephemera, I decided that I wanted to use naturally radioactive materials as the source for my 'penetrating rays' rather than an amateur electrical x-ray machine setup. Secondly, as a participant in the digital revolution, the whole concept of a darkroom with the necessary equipment and development chemicals seemed unwieldy. I knew a digital setup wouldn't provide any results but I didn't want to invest in a darkroom.

Then it occurred to me: Polaroid! Polaroid film is readily available and it develops itself. However, a workable technique needed to be developed. How to expose the film for hours or days without the need for absolute darkness? How would I develop the film reliably after an exposure was made?

The answer came from Kevin Clark of the Yahoo group, "GeigerCounterEnthusiasts". Most of the conversation on this group surrounds the maintenance, repair and collection of old civil defense-era radiation detectors. However, there is some list activity on other radiation-related topics. It was here that Clark explained his simple, yet reliable, technique for creating inexpensive Polaradiographs.

Items you'll need:

1. A Polaroid SX-70, Type 600, or Spectra camera
2. A package of unexposed Type 600 or Spectra Polaroid film
3. One metal cookie tin at least six inches in diameter
4. A few sheets/roll of aluminum foil
5. Radioactive material

Link - Thanks Jon Jason!

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