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Peeling Scotch Tape Produces X-Rays, Scientists Say

Scotch tape has many uses, X-Rays wouldn’t typically be one of them. According to Scientists at the University of California in Los Angeles it can do just that, but only in a vacuum. (great office gift for your secretary — just don’t let the wife find out!)

“At some point, we were a little bit scared,” researcher Juan Escobar says in the report. There’s no need to fear, though; while scientists were surprised by the news, they say it adheres to basic principles of physics.

“It’s a phenomenon called ‘triboluminescence,’” James M. Hevezi, chair of the American College of Radiology’s Medical Physics Commission, told TechNewsWorld.

That phenomenon — the generation of light through rubbing and thereby breaking the bonds in a crystal — is nothing new. Remember the old Wint-O-Green Life Saver spark in the dark trick? It’s the same deal.

“You might try an experiment where you go into a dark closet and pull Scotch tape off a regular roll,” Hevezi suggested. “You can see some flashes of light at the point where the tape leaves the roll. That’s the triboluminescence phenomenon,” he said.

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