Kirlian Photography

Kirlian Camera

The camera was made from 2 10x8" photo frame front glasses. After removing all of the clips and card you are left with 2 pieces of 3mm glass with bevelled edges.

Laying one down I put a 1.5mm diameter copper wire about 1/2" from the edge around three sides, leaving the top open.
In the 1/2" gap I applied silicon bath sealant and placed the second piece of on top of the copper wire and sealant. This made a pocket 1.5mm wide, surrounded on three sides with copper and glass front and back. I left this to dry for 24 hours.

I needed a high frequency HV source, After trying Kirlian photography using a flyback transformer a while ago I realised that a modern flyback has rectifiers built in and getting a strong HF AC output would be dificault unless I could find an old transformer only flyback. So after a bit of tought I went for an ignition coil source.

The ignition coil driver I used can be found here 
I added a 10nF accross the coil and ran the coil/cap at resonance to increase the voltage output. With this circuit running from 12V I can get 25mm arcs, more than the coil can handle. So I extended the ignition coil insulation with 22mm pvc pipe and loads of silicone sealer, the coil can be seen at the RHS of the picture.


When the silicon was dry, I cut a slot in a pair of drain pipes to form an insulating stand and inserted the two glass sheets. I filled the "pocket" in the glass sheets with tap water, and connected the HV supply to the copper wire from the center of the ignition coil.

The sample needs to be pushed against the glass quite firmly, so I found a peice of (non conducting) foam and used the 12V battery to push this against the back sheet of glass. An earthed wire is pushed through the foam to earth the sample from behind.

My Camera was set up for long exposures, pointed at the glass, & focussed

I inserted a small leaf and turned on the juice. and took a few pictures at various exposures.

Unfortunatly unless you spread out the earthed source, the arc cuts through your sample (see middle of the picture on RHS) , but I got an excelent picture first time.

To prevent the wire burning through the sample, I tried a 1p coin instead.

A 20p coin

This gave nice inner details, but as the coin was rather worn I had a hunt for a mint coin.

I found a Â£5 coin as this had never been in circulation, it had nice crisp edges.
Another leaf. This time with a bigger earth electrode to spread the load a bit.

Sorry I'm no botanist I have no idea what sort of leaf, I think its probably a weed.

A fern , Unfortuneatly there has been a hard frost here, most of the nice spiky leafed plants have got shrivelled up leaves.

Kirlian photography is supposed to show the "healthyness" of the plant, by giving strong or weak "auras". This picture clearly shows that the leaf is in good health, which is supprising since its been removed from its mother plant and will be dead in a couple of days.

And a mosfet. 

This too looks, by the strength of its aura, in very good health.

I somewhat doubt this, as before I started taking kirlian photos it measured a dead short from G-D and I doubt that 10KV up all of the pins since has done it much good.

A key, Again this key has never been used so it still has nice sharp edges. 

I found that for the best results my camera needed to be at about 40cm from the glass, and I used an exposure of 13 seconds at F4.5.

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