high speed photography kwakking

A couple weeks ago, I was sitting on a couch at Goooogle around 3 in the morning and noticed a huge flash outside. It was literally landscape illuminating and I thought to myself, "lightning?" Of course, the sky was completely clear of clouds and there was no ensuing thunderclap. This got me to thinking about some stuff I read about inventor extraordinaire and Nebraska native Harold Edgerton ages ago.

See, Edgerton was a pioneer in flash photography and built a flash bulb so powerful that it could be used for nighttime aerial reconnaissance photography from altitudes greater than 30,000', well out of enemy missile range. I recall seeing a video of Edgerton holding up a newspaper in front of this flash bulb at a distance of 10 feet and setting the paper ablaze when the flash triggered.

So what does this have to do with anything? Well, today is the 60th Anniversary of the Hiroshima A-bomb. Edgerton developed a camera that could take pictures of nuclear tests from 10 miles away, with submicrosecond exposure times.

Here are some complete mind fucks that resulted from the experiments:

Note the guard wires for the suspension tower vaporizing as they're instantly heated to millions of degrees.

See more here

Also see some random high speed video files from Colorado State. The Jello videos are incredible.


100 Suns

If you like the bomb pictures, 100 Suns is an amazing collection of images of almost every atmospheric nuclear explosion performed by the United States. I think one of those high speed shots is in it. The same author compiled Full Moon, a collection of images from the Apollo project on the moon taken from the original NASA negatives.