Calculating the Measurements of Objects

Digitome is capable of accurate measurement down to the order of microns given a small focal spot size and low pixel depth for a digital image plate, typical conditions for high-resolution digital radiographs. This video demonstrates how Digitome measures objects in an exam; the objects used have well-known sizes to test the software’s accuracy. The …

Charlotte Observer: High Tech Tackles Blackbeard’s Booty

Students in Davidson College’s physics department have been examining artifacts from a long-ago grounded ship off the North Carolina coast that state officials say was Blackbeard’s Queen Anne’s Revenge. But this isn’t a treasure hunt. For them, the prize is in the discovery – uncovering clues about life in the early 1700s, perhaps even solidifying …

Non-destructive X-ray Imaging System Helps Reveal the Past

Blackbeard’s infamous pirate ship, The Queen Anne’s Revenge (QAR), lay lost on the ocean floor off the North Carolina coast for almost 300 years. It was discovered in 1996, but most of the relics of colonial culture aboard its decks, such as specks of gold, glass beads, firearms and brass pins, remain hidden inside a …

Three-dimensional Digitome Exam Shows Fine Details of a Pythagoras Cup

The original Pythagoras cup was designed around 500 BC to teach its users to drink in moderation. If liquid is filled into the cup above a specific height, it all completely funnels out of a hole in the bottom of the cup and onto the drinker’s lap. A three-dimensional radiographic exam of a modern Chinese …

Davidson Will Lead in Exploring Scientific and Humanistic Capabilities of New 3D Imaging System

View a video of a Digitome scan. Davidson physics students plowed new scientific ground in 1896 when they took the first X-ray images on American soil. Contemporary Davidson physicists now have a similarly momentous opportunity. The department has recently become the first non-governmental entity in the country to acquire a revolutionary Digitome VXI-500Fx non-destructive imaging …

Digitome Exam of an Alaska Quarter

Two-dimensional x-radiography is often sufficient for looking at simple, relatively flat objects. But what happens when an object has multiple layers of information or overlapping parts? A coin with two faces is an example of such an object—a two-dimensional radiograph allows the viewer to pick up certain details of each face of the coin, but …

New Physics Imaging Device Will Help Reveal the Past

Blackbeard’s infamous pirate ship, The Queen Anne’s Revenge (QAR), lay lost on the ocean floor off the North Carolina coast for almost 300 years. It was discovered in 1996, but most of the relics of colonial culture aboard its decks, such as specks of gold, glass beads, firearms and brass pins, remain hidden inside a …

Unveiling the Hollow Interior and Measurements of a Geode

Geodes are hollow, closed shells made of igneous or sedimentary rock. They generally form in cooling lava or in sedimentary geological structures over several thousand years. Though the mechanisms of void formation differ, the same process occurs in time for all geodes: water-carrying minerals, usually calcite (CaCO3), seeps into the microscopic pores of the shell …

CBS Sunday Morning: Historic Achievement of 1896 Makes News 118 Years Later

“This day in national history” came to Davidson on CBS Sunday Morning, when the show’s “Almanac” segment featured the exploits of research students of Prof. Henry Louis Smith. Bribing a janitor to get into the lab, they photographed three bullets and a borrowed cadaver finger, among other objects. Contemporary Davidson physicists now have a similarly …