All posts by John Fowler

Radiation Physics in medicine and astronomy

The definition and meaning of Radiation

In physics, Radiation is the emission of energy and waves or atomic and subatomic particles through space or through a material. It can be natural (e.g. radiation from sun) or man-made (e.g. radiation from a cell phone or computer). It was first discovered over a century ago by the scientist Wilhelm Röntgen in 1895, after he made an experiment with a cathode tube and saw the screen in front of it glowing after covering the tube – hence the name of “X-rays” was given to the rays provoking the phenomenon, as the invisible rays were unknown to the scientist.

Radiation comes in different forms, for instance, gamma rays and X rays are photons which transfer energy in a way that creates ionization. Other types of photons are ultraviolet radiation, infrared or microwaves, but they do not correspond to the ionizing radiation type.

The use of Radiation Physics

Educational institutions all over the world use Radiation Physics in their experiments, research projects and laboratory work with the aim to discover more possibilities of use of Radiation. It is used in many fields and study areas, such as industry, education and research and especially medicine. The study of radiation and the researches on it has helped engineers and doctors combine their knowledge to build innovative tools and machines to discover diseases faster and easier. If the Radiation Physics is your study subject at your university – all this information can be a good essay help for you.

Considering the first example provided, the X rays, it is now well-known that this is one of the biggest innovations now used worldwide in every hospital and clinic to image the human body. Besides the ability to detect and prevent diseases, doctors also use the X-ray machine to treat the affected areas from lupus and nervous diseases and eliminate the cancerous tissues. Such situations are the results of use of nuclear medicine. Dentists also use radiation to spot dental problems in a fast and painless way.

Another form of imaging using based on Radiation Physics is the Magnetic Resonance – a low-energy type of radiation which uses radio frequency which is known for being a safer type of imaging the human body, as there are no risks that it can damage the internal tissues. It is mostly used for imaging vessels for the detection of cardiovascular diseases.

The discovery of Radiation in 1895 is for sure one of the most important events which lead the physicians to new opportunities and doctors to new ways of helping people. With the technology and innovations of the present day, we are now using smaller and smarter machines that can produce high-quality images in almost no time in a painless way. These improvements in the advanced use of radiation physics helped millions of people with health problems – as the specialists use nuclear medicine to diagnose conditions in internal organs of the human body, such as the pancreas, thyroid, brain, etc.

There are also many scientists who proved that radiation (especially the man-made) is very dangerous to your health, and while in hospitals it is used to treat a brain tumour for example, it can also lead the patient to brain tumour if the patient is exposed to too much radiation in his life (from gadgets for instance). But Dr Rebecca Smith‐BindmanIs’ opinion on this is that is is almost impossible to calculate how much radiation one can “handle” to stay healthy and keep the risk low.

What is an Equatorial Platform?

The slideshow attempts to explain simply how the idea of an Equatorial tracking Platform is derived from a classical driven Equatorial mount.

Essentially a tracking platform converts your Dobsonian mounted telescope into a motor driven polar aligned Equatorially mounted telescope system.

Many hundreds of these Equatorial Platforms have been built for Dobsonian mounted telescopes, and the theory works superbly in practice.

The Dobsonian mounted telescope, sits on a small platform which then rotates the whole telescope and its mount, and thus the telescope tracks celestial objects as they drift across the sky.

To work well equatorial platforms have to be very carefully designed and built to match the latitude of the observer, and then made with quality materials to quite close tolerances. They also need to be accurately driven, either by a precisely geared speed variable DC motor, or by a more complex electronically controlled stepper motor capable of providing accurately a sufficiently slow rotation speed.

The Watch House Equatorial Platform, of course, meets all of these Design Criteria.

Now, by driving the Platform relative to the groundboard, at a speed that matches the rate of the Earth’s rotation, the telescope tracks celestial objects keeping them in the eyepiece field of view for 10’s of minutes even at high or very high magnification powers eg 300x – 500x .

The overall North/South tilt of the platform when set up anywhere from 470 North to 570 North is only a maximum of 5 degrees from level.

The overall movement of the platform table , ie the East/West tilting motion as the platform tracks during one hour involves only a maximum of +/- 8 degrees from the mid-way horizontal & level position at each end of the tracking arc.

Watch House Platform tracking Arc

The above “stopped motion” animation shows the overall movement described by the Watch House platform over one hours tracking.


Because objects remain stationary in the eyepiece, you can observe much finer detail and fainter objects become a pleasure to observe.

Upgrade your Dobsonian mounted telescope with a Watch House Equatorial Platform and you will immediately enjoy the following:

No more nudging the damn scope to keep painstakingly located objects in the eyepiece, as your telescope + platform setup now tracks the stars!

Greatly reduced eye fatigue for the observer.

Much higher powers become comfortable for lunar, planetary and DSO observing, 300x to 400x becomes a routine pleasure and up to a theoretical 600x becomes possible, with the object remaining steady in the eyepiece.

Much finer detail is appreciated, as your brain processes an essentially stationary image.

Sketching becomes a pleasure, as objects now remain stable in the eyepiece as you move back and forth between eyepiece and sketch pad, even at high magnifications.

You can now use your scope for photography, with some limitations ( of course ! ) , including with the new generation of very reasonably priced integrating CCD cameras, see our photography pages for more information .

Go anywhere portability, as the Watch House Equatorial Platform weighs only 18lbs and is easily carried in 2 pieces, taking less than 5 minutes to set up and align in the field.

Additionally the Platform requires no external power supply, so no mains lead tethering you to the house, and no heavy & expensive 12v Powerpack to lug about either, just its own small 9v battery .

Photography as coursework in 2018

Photography is a common occurrence in our modern society. Photography is an art of capturing and recording events, moments and images. The widespread use of photography is influenced by the constant rise of science and technology. Some people have turned into photography as a coursework.

Photography in media.

Photography is a useful tool in the media. Most media houses require professional photographers to capture crucial pictures and videos for them. It is a necessity that any journalist going out for a field task must be accompanied by a photographer, this has made photography to be an important matter in the collections of news and information. Various professions in the media associated with photography are photographers, photo editors and video producers.

Photography as a course.

Photography is being taught in many colleges as a discipline. It is either taught as photographing or it is incorporated as a subject in mass media and communication. Students are now taking photography as a career path, some of the units in photography are portraits, techniques for photographing and tools of photographing. A good population of students have graduated from the following Colleges with degrees and certificates: the University of Arizona, California Institute of arts, University of New Mexico, Yale school of fine art, Columbia College and Virginia Commonwealth University. Pre-graduates are also assigned coursework writing in photography to get various degrees such as Bachelor of arts in photography. Studying photography provides learners with various skills such as editing software and camera equipment, problem-solving skills and giving attention to detail.

Photography as recreation.

Many people have gotten into photography as a hobby and as a source of creating happiness for themselves. There are very many photos all over the internet and on social media platforms of people capturing what they love using cameras. Many people like capturing the magnificent things in nature. It is common to come across pictures of birds feeding their little ones or a strange building in a beautiful sunset. Anybody on the internet may also come across magnificent features such as waterfalls, mountain peaks and the thick forests. All these have been captured by passionate photographers with an unrelenting interest in photography.

Photography in sensitization.

We cannot end this discussion without looking at how photography has led to the spread of information worldwide. A large population of people depends on photography to learn what is happening in other parts of the world. Without photography a citizen in Helsinki wouldn’t know what is happening in Madagascar, photography has therefore played an important role in sensitizing people about human rights activities, latest commodities in the market and the latest innovations. It is also through photography that most of us understand other cultures, communities and people, photography has enlightened us on the existence of native communities in the Amazon and other parts of the world.



Photography is an important discipline in our current generation. We should appreciate works by various agencies to institutionalize photography. Efforts by universities, media houses and technology industries are greatly recommended. Photography is a scientific art of creating durable images. Photography involves cameras and video recorders.

Moonlight Eclipse on 27-28 July 2018 – Unique Nature Phenomenon

The Famous blood moon occurred on July 27-28 with a record time of 103 minutes of a darkened moon. It is the longest Lunar eclipse in the 21st century with a record 6 hours and 14 minutes with penumbral and Partial phases included. Being the second and last total eclipse in 2018 it made 17th of the 85 eclipses in the year. The next similarly long eclipse will occur in 2036 and 2029. These event is an iconic astronomic miracle, here are the reasons why.

The 25000 year Coincidence.
The Moonlight eclipse occurred at a time when the earth was at its farthest from the sun (Aphelion) with mars approaching its closest opposition to the Earth. The moon at its farthest from the earth (Apogee) making it appear smaller and take longer to cross through the Earth’s shadow, This coincidence will occur again after 25000 years.

The Century Long Length record.
The longest a lunar eclipse can take is 107 minutes according to scientists. The 27-28 July 2018 eclipse was short by just 4 minutes comparable only to the June 2000 eclipse that lasted 106 minutes and 24 seconds.
The 2036 Eclipse may not reach such a long time of total moon darkness. The 2029 Eclipse will have 102 minutes of totality.

The Appearance of Shooting Stars.
Shooting stars are associated with the Meteor showers that happens every summer between Mid July and late august in most places. The lunar eclipse occurred in the early evening and early to early morning across the globe at different places. The appearance of shooting stars was sighted in Jerusalem and Moscow. The peak of the shooting stars happens around august 12th to 14th.

The Position Of Mars.
Mars is most visible on Earth when it is directly opposite the sun on earth which happens every 2 years. In 2018, Mars was closest to the earth on July 27th 2018 appearing brighter than any other time of the year. The distance of Mars from the Earth in July 2018 is part of a 60,000 year long record at 57 million kilometers, after the spectacular 2003 closeness.

The Lunar Eclipse made the view of Mars very clear with naked eyes in many places. Such a closeness to Earth is only expected to happen next in August 2287.

Extra Reddish Appearance.
The red color of the moon occurs due to refraction of the sun’s rays in the Earth’s atmosphere. As a result of the location of the Earth on its orbit in July 2018 and the consequent straight alignment of the three atmospheric bodies, the moon appeared more red than many other total Lunar Eclipse in recent years.

Because of the Apogee location of the moon and the Peripheral location of the Earth, The Shadow of the Earth covered the moon in Africa, South America, Asia and Europe. North America had no citings. The darkest moon was visible in Moscow and Athens. The brightest red color was visible from Jerusalem and other parts of the middle east.

What is Coming Next.
The July 27-28 2018 Moonlight eclipse is part of the Lunar Saros Cycle according to Nasa which has 71 Eclipses. Saros refers to occurrence of an eclipse when the sun, Earth and moon are in similar locations. The 129 Saros Cycle started in the mid 14th century and it will end in July 2613. The Eclipse falls between two partial solar eclipse, July 12-13 2018 and August 12-13 2018.

How to make the best portraits in nature

Taking portraits in nature is important because they render a person in their natural environment. Nature portraits usually tell a story compared to the old studio or locational portraits which just show a person at that moment.
The tips for making a good portrait include
Focusing on nature and let other things haze in the background

To get the best out of nature it is important to focus on nature in the background rather than the people who are getting the photograph taken. Ensure that the distance is optimum to ensure that people are not the focus in order to make it look like you intentionally focused on nature while taking took the picture.

Interacting with nature

To make some of the best memories it is essential to play and interact with Mother Nature. Nature makes portraits look very beautiful and amazing. A lot of materials from nature can be used, rocks branch water drops, and all these can make the portrait to look much very awesome. A person can jump, play with rocks or seem like they are blowing water before the perfect shot is taken, this will make the picture to look very awesome.

Decorating Mother Nature little bit

This can be done by adding a few decorations such as disco lights hanging from tree branches, putting a couch in a field before taking a photo can go a lot of ways to make the photo shoot period a success. Using different props when making a portrait will make it harder for people not to smile when looking at the photographic portrait.

Avoid shooting in direct sunlight

Direct sunlight will make the pictures to have shadows in them which will make them have a blur when taken. In order for you to take a perfect photo for a portrait, it is important to be taken when the sun is rising or when it is setting when it is cloudy or if you have to take it during a sunny day then take it under a shade.


The location for taking the portrait is very important. For a nature portrait to be perfect the location at which the photographs will be taken has to be chosen well. The area has to have many nature things like many trees or a river or anything the photographer will choose as long as it portrays nature well.

Camera focal length and aperture

It is important to ensure that the focal length of the camera and the aperture are at optimum length and condition. This two characters will affect how the picture was taken will look like. When one wants to focus on the background it is important to use maximum focal length to guarantee that the background is captured well.


The time the portrait is taken also has an effect if the portrait will be great or it will be a blur. The best time to take a natural portrait is in the evening or down because there is a lot of shade around which will give the portrait another dimension adding nature to it will make the portrait very amazing.

Following the above tips will ensure that a portrait taken in nature will be perfect, following the tips guarantee you the best portrait