Old 10-10-2009, 10:22 PM #1
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Default Bluray, Zinc, Sulfur, and Phosphorescence.

Last night, while playing around with my blurays, I remembered something about zinc sulfide and fluorescence or phosphorescence. Having entertained myself exposing Jack Daniels, Tonic Water, highliter dye in water, and various other things to my blurays, it was time to try something different. (So far, the Jack Daniels was the best part ... )

I decided that I had to try zinc sulfide. So, I took some powdered zinc and powdered sulfur and mixed them well. Since this mixture is a pyrotechnic that can also be used a rocket fuel (see youtube), I treated it with caution. About a quarter of a gram was placed on an aluminum block. This was ignited with my brass 310mW bluray very easily. A flash of greenish light and copious amounts of white smoke were produced, leaving a mound of zinc sulfide on the aluminum block. (Yes the room I did this in has a ventilation system to outside.) The room lights were turned off and the bluray was shined on the zinc sulfide for a few seconds. A green afterglow can be seen quite easily for about a second each time the pile was briefly irradiated with my bluray.

This video shows the proceedings and result.



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Old 10-11-2009, 01:49 AM #2
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Default Re: Bluray, Zinc, Sulfur, and Phosphorescence.

That was sweet, it seems like there are so many things that exhibit phosphorescence when a blu ray is shined on them.
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Old 10-12-2009, 06:20 PM #3
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Default Re: Bluray, Zinc, Sulfur, and Phosphorescence.

i love the aprt where you use a bluray laser to ignite the stuff :-)
commercial pigments have dopands to enhance the phosphorescence. you probably wont have their stuff at home, but anything that will produce "defects" in the resulting ZnS should help.. put a few percent dirt in it ;-)
oh, and try yellow blu-blocking glasses for greatly enhanced effect!

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Old 10-12-2009, 06:36 PM #4
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Default Re: Bluray, Zinc, Sulfur, and Phosphorescence.

I've tried similar experiment few weeks ago. Results were quite similar - only brief glow. Main difference was that I added some copper as a dopant to "increase" light output. The goal was producing fluorescent smoke ... and it was complete failure .
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Old 10-12-2009, 06:51 PM #5
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Default Re: Bluray, Zinc, Sulfur, and Phosphorescence.

I can't believe you lit zinc/sulfur with a laser, that stuff is not easy to light in pyrotechnics. Back in my pyro days it was impossible to get Zn/S based stars to ignite without elaborate priming layers, I have to say I am impressed with the power of that laser! Nice video BTW.
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Old 10-13-2009, 02:12 AM #6
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Default Re: Bluray, Zinc, Sulfur, and Phosphorescence.

styropyro - I was surprised at how easily the bluray will light zinc/sulfur. It's almost instant, and the laser was nearly 3 feet away. Same laser lights up fine steel wool no problem. Roll caps, powder from .22's, nitrogen triiodide, tatp, this laser seems to get them all going.

krutz - I'll have to try this again with goggles for the camera as well. Thanks also for the hint about contaminants being beneficial to the phosphorescent effect.

laserov - I'd never thought of fluorescent smoke from a chemical reaction. I tried highliter dye in a fog machine, no luck at all.

Peanut butter seems to work about as well as ZnS, maybe I should try mixing peanut butter and ZnS. OK, I just tried peanut butter and ZnS mixture, does not increase or enhance the effect any. (Same laser used as in video, 310mW brass bluray)
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